Comparison of Hate Crime Rates Across Protected and Unprotected Groups
By Rebecca Stotzer
Sexual orientation and gender identity are not currently covered by federal hate crime laws. This analysis compares victimization rates for lesbian, gay, and bisexual individuals with groups already covered by hate crime laws. Results indicate that the hate crime rate against lesbian, gay, and bisexual individuals is comparable to the rate of hate crimes against already protected groups. While the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs reports an average of 213 hate crimes per year, the federal government has no system in place for documenting or collecting these statistics. This discrepancy indicates a need for including gender identity in hate crime tracking laws, and extending legislative protection to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people.