Assemblywoman Janet Nguyen’s bill, AB 1336 to create regionalized task forces to address hate crimes, passed the Assembly Public Safety Committee unanimously last week.
Hate crimes have gone up at alarming rates during the past year. There have been over 1600 hate related crimes reported nationwide. Currently crimes of this nature are going largely unreported to law enforcement or to the Department of Justice.
“People have been harassed, they have been shunned, personal property has been vandalized and in some cases, acts of physical violence and death have occurred,” said Assemblywoman Janet Nguyen. “We have a responsibility to protect every individual from hate-based crimes. No one should have to live in fear and AB 1336 is an important first step toward allowing people to feel safe.”
Establishing a hate crime task force will allow local law enforcement agencies to participate and share data within a regional approach so that California can work to reduce these incidents. This approach should give a more complete accounting of the number of hate crimes occurring statewide and allow greater collaboration between law enforcement agencies.
“The Garden Grove Police Department stands against hate,” said Garden Grove Police Chief Tom DaRé. “Our communities are like families and we need to take care of each other. AB 1336 will improve our ability to hold perpetrators of hate crimes accountable. Law enforcement cannot act upon what we do not know. The police department needs to have more accessible data on these hate crimes so we can protect our community members and this bill will make that possible.”
Faith Bautista, CEO of the National Asian-American Coalition, also offered the following: “The ultimate goal of a society like ours is to be able to live productively and safely because we have embraced and accepted our diversity as a nation. Inclusivity is what will propel us toward a progressive future. Hate incidents and crimes should be dealt with zero tolerance. We need to be more loving and compassionate towards each other and be vigilant more than ever against what further divides us.”
AB 1336 is now headed to the Assembly Floor to be voted on there.