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News, Updates, and More from the Facing Facts Network

Welcome to our fifth Facing Facts Network Newsletter! A lot has happened since our fourth newsletter in November. To learn more about how to become a member please email Facing Facts Network Director Melissa Sonnino at

Read on for more about our work and for news about key developments in hate crime and hate speech. 


The first annual meeting of the Facing Facts Network

Since 2011, Facing Facts has worked with various partners. 2022 marked a change for Facing Facts with its first official reference as the Facing Facts Network. The Facing Facts Network consists of 27 members and brings together civil society organisations, change agents and public authorities from 15 countries to tackle hate crime and hate speech across Europe. 

On November 30th, members reflected together during the first annual meeting on the first year of the Facing Facts Network and discussed future collaboration opportunities. Representatives of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) and the European Commission joined to highlight achievements and challenges in addressing hate crimes and supporting victims. To see the documentation and more photos of the day, follow our Twitter thread.

Meeting of Working Group on hate crime victim support

On December 1st, Melissa Sonnino and Joanna Perry attended the working group on victims support, which aims at providing better security measures, legal aid, psychological counseling and material or linguistic support to victims of hate crimes. Find out more on the framework of the High Level Group on combating hate speech and hate crime under which this working group is held.

End of European Training Cohort 

Our last tutorial session of the training cohort "Identifying, Responding and Monitoring to Hate Crime" took place on Wednesday, December 14th.

During 7 weeks, change agents from public authorities and civil society organisations discussed international standards, bias indicators, the impact of hate crime and how to use data to improve safety, support and justice to victims. We also organised a special session on data sharing agreements in the context of hate crimes for our participants and members, which was presented by representatives of the National Police Chiefs Council in England and Wales, Tell MAMA and the Community Security Trust. Find out more about our training opportunities.
Latest EU evaluation of Code of Conduct reveals less removed hate speech by IT companies

On November 24th, the European Commission published the latest results of the seventh monitoring exercise of the Code of Conduct, which was agreed with IT companies in 2016 to counter and prevent the spread of hate speech online. The latest results show the following:

  1. IT companies reviewed fewer notifications (64.4%) within 24 hours in comparison to the two previous years (90.40% in 2020, to 81% in 2021).
  2. Most IT platforms (except for YouTube) have removed less hate speech content than in 2021.
  3. Anti-gypsyism, xenophobia and sexual orientation are the most commonly reported ground of hate speech. 
We participated in this monitoring exercise together with 11 members of our network.

OSCE ODIHR published 2021 hate crime data

On November 16h, the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) updated its database on the recording, legislation, prosecution and sentencing of hate crime.

In its press release OSCE ODIHR emphasised the important role of civil society organisations in addressing hate crime by providing specialist support for hate crime victims, by helping most reporting among targeted communities and by feeding into national policy to combat intolerance.

Are you interested in the national ODIHR hate crime data of your country?
Find out here.

European Council gives final approval of Digital Service Act

On October 4th, the European Council approved the Digital Service Act (DSA) package. The DSA defines responsibilities and accountability for online and social media platforms, online marketplaces and search engines:
  • combats the online sale of illegal products
  • introduces measures to counter illegal content online
  • better protects minors online
  • imposes limits on advertising
  • bans misleading interfaces


Tackling anti-Muslim racism in Germany

Facing Facts develops with its newest member CLAIM alliance in Germany monitoring definitions and techniques to capture the full spectrum of anti-Muslim racism using the revised ECRI's General Policy Recommendation no. 5 as a framework for the upcoming workshops. 


An increase of reported hate incidents against Roma people in Spain

Our member Fundación Secretariado Gitano (FSG) published its new annual report "Discrimination and the Roma community 2022" which sheds light on verified cases of discrimination and hate incidents against the Roma community in Spain. 

The report documents an increase of reported anti-Gypsyist hate incidents this year (554 cases compared to 364 in 2021). The increase is, according to FSG, due to: 
  • the flagging of anti-Gypsyist hate messages identified on social media in the 6th Monitoring round of the Commission's Code of Conduct, in which FSG participated
  • more reporting due to an increased awareness of Roma people in the discrimination they suffer
  • positive rulings in strategic litigation cases that trigger more active reporting processes.
Read the report in Spanish or English


British Society of Criminology Hate Crime Network Podcast

The BSC's Hate Crime Network podcast hosted an episode on disability and the intersectionalities of hate crime.

Guests Prof. Stephen MacDonald, Prof. Catherine Donovan and Dr. John Clayton present their research using an intersectional lense and explain the differences of hate relationship and mate crime in the context of experiences of hate for disabled people. Find their research paper here.

Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or Citizens, Equality, Rights and Values Programme. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.

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