Police College of Finland: Hate crimes rise by 7% in 2011

by , under Enrique

A total of 918 suspected hate crimes were reported in Finland in 2011, which is a 7% rise from 860 cases in the previous year, according to the Police College of Finland. Compared with the previous years, suspected hate crime cases have not risen significantly, according to researcher Iina Sahramäki.

“If we look the previous years to 2008 (when the Police College of Finland started to report hate crime statistics), there hasn’t been any significant growth,” she told Migrant Tales.

The majority (86%) of suspected hate crimes were racially motivated. Other factors included religious background (6.6%), sexual orientation (4.6%) and disability (2.6%). Three cases (0.3%) involved transgender victims.

Somalis were the single biggest national group that were victims of hate crimes in Finland in 2011.

Table 1. Suspected hate crimes in Finland by year.
Year              Cases
 2011………..918
2010………..860
2009………1,007
2008………..859
Source: Police College of Finland
Read full report here (in Finnish).

  1. Farang

    This is not very good journalism. This article totally ignores the fact that mostly the rise in hate crimes are caused by hate crimes committed by immigrants.

    As such this article gives impression that Finns have acted more racist than previous year, which is not the case.

    • Mark

      Farang

      This is not very good journalism.

      Ah, the whitewash begins – first line of attack, the credibility of the source.

      This article totally ignores the fact that mostly the rise in hate crimes are caused by hate crimes committed by immigrants.

      Nowhere in the report did I find this stated as the reason for the increase. 78% of suspects were Finnish citizens compared with 80% in the previous year, giving only a 2% shift. The report also makes clear that some situations where a fight ensued meant that a victim can also be recorded as a suspect. Make of that what you will.

      What I will quote from the report is the following:

      In the majority of the cases, racism was directed towards a member of an ethnic or national minority by a member of the majority population. The most common suspected crimes were assaults. The most common scenes of the suspected racist crimes were public outdoor locations such as roads or city market places, as well as restaurants and their vicinity.

      Doesn’t get much plainer than that.

  2. Farang

    Nowhere in the report did I find this stated as the reason for the increase. 78% of suspects were Finnish citizens compared with 80% in the previous year, giving only a 2% shift.

    You ignore the fact that this figure (Finnish citizens) includes also immigrants who have gained Finnish citizenship. So in reality the cases where the suspect is an original Finn have decreased and hate crimes by immigrants have raised.

    • Mark

      Farang

      I have not forgotten it for a second. But being aware of that fact does not open this statistic or change it in any way, unless you have data that we do not have. We simply don’t know how many immigrants are included in those Finns. Some of those citizens are not born in Finland, but they could be returning children of Finns or Europeans.

      What is clear is that the change of only 2% does not justify your pathetic and racist claim that any increase must be the fault of immigrants being racist. You make an outrageous claim for which you appear to have no evidence. At the same time you are clearly trying to draw attention away from the obvious and clearly bigger problem of racism on the part of the majority against minority groups in Finland. No surprises there, Farang. Everyone’s got your number here, fella!

  3. khr

    About the effect of gained Finnish citizenships, the suspects are also categorized by their birth place (page 64 of the report). 69% are born in Finland, compared to 73% in previous year. That obviously does give a full picture either, due to the second generation immigrants, ethnic finns born abroad etc. Just giving Mark and Farang more to fight about 😛

    On the whole all the trends seem flat in the report. There are small changes, but nothing that would not fit inside yearly variation.

    • Enrique Tessieri

      –On the whole all the trends seem flat in the report. There are small changes, but nothing that would not fit inside yearly variation.

      khr, are you concerned? What kind of a threat does hate crime pose on our immigrant-visible minority community?

    • Mark

      Thanks khr. I made reference to those. I agree the figures don’t show much change. I would say though that they are still woefully inadequate and that I would class this as institutional racism, where racism is covered up by a lack of useful or clear statistics. The fact the statistics don’t break down to reveal how many suspects were ‘dragged’ into a fight and were therefore primarily victims is shocking. And it’s that a defence for those committing racist attacks that they just counter-accuse the victim? The government need to do much more to supplement these police figures with other indicators, such as annual surveys.

  4. Farang

    One thing also worth mentioning, about the statistics of year 2010:

    A somali was a suspect in 27 cases
    A finn was a suspect in 657 cases

    When you take in account the population 0,0126 % of finns were suspect of racist hate crimes and 0,4095 % of somalis were suspect of racist hate crimes.

    Therefore Somalis are responsible for over 30 times more hate crimes than Finns.

    • Mark

      Farang

      You only make a fool of yourself, Farang. Give it up.

      Trying to create a meaninful statistic by looking at crimes per head of population ignores an absolutely fundamental differential between the minority and the majority populations:

      Finns come into contact with Somalis a lot less often than Somalis come into contact with Finns.

      The actual figure is 369 times less. Think about that for a moment. No, don’t just think about it, you have to adjust for it in your statistics.

      Here are some initial adjustments to the figures based on population and cohort sizes:

      First, a correction. By your reckoning, there are some 6000 Somalis living in Finland, when in truth, there are actually almost 14,000 Somali speakers in Finland. Taking khr’s figures for fights that were not a result of provocation, then 12 as a percentage of 13,930 is actually 0.086% per head of population

      Now, take into account that most (66%) of this kind of racist crime reported to the police is committed by young people in the age group 15-34 years and you will realise that you must adjust for the size of this age cohort in the population structures of Finns and Somalis.

      5,584 Somalis aged 15 – 34 (as of 2011) = 40.08% of the population in this age cohort.

      1,252,357 Finns aged 15 – 34 (as of 2011) = 24.34% of the population in this age cohort.

      Translate this into figures (based on khr’s) and you get this:

      66% x 545 = 360 for a population of 1252357 = 0.028% would be suspects (Finns)

      66% x 12 = 8 for a population of 5584 = 0.143% would be suspects (Somalis)

      Already, the rate has doubled for Finns and cut by almost two-thirds for Somalis.

      Now, we must make an adjustment for the fact that a great majority of Finns will seldom or never come into contact with Somalis. How to do this? A Somali is outnumbered by Finns by 369 to 1.

      For every single Finn that comes into contact with a Somali, there are likely to be 368 who don’t. Not only that, Somali women do not mingle a great deal in public, so actually, that differential would be even higher, but lets start with no gender adjustments.

      So what we are saying is that if Finns and Somalis were of equal population, the figure for Finnish assaults would be 368 times higher. I.e. :

      Finns aged 15-34 = 10.3% of Finns would be suspects

      Somalis aged 15-34 = 0.14 would be suspects

      Yes, that’s a 73 times higher rate of racist assault for Finns aged 15–34 compared to Somalis of the same age.

      Stick that in your pipe and smoke it!

  5. khr

    Mark: There’s some data at page 38 about the situations leading to the suspected crimes. Of the violence cases 224 were unidirectional, and 103 were fights. I don’t think those were further examined by nationality (somewhat disappointing, but on the other hand I can understand the researchers. The statistic significance drops rapidly when you break your data to smaller and smaller subcategories)

    Farang: The numbers (by birth place) cleaned from incidents started from provocation are 545 and 12 respectively. Still high for Somalians, but not as bad as the numbers you chose. (No, I don’t think beating someone is an acceptable response to provocation, but I don’t think it’s appropriate to choose the worst possible numbers either). We don’t know too well the effect of mutual aggression either (see above).

    • Mark

      Thanks for the update. I’ve used your figures in my further calculations above.

  6. Farang

    Yes, that’s a 73 times higher rate of racist assault for Finns aged 15–34 compared to Somalis of the same age.
    Stick that in your pipe and smoke it!

    And here it comes again. Mark goes on and twists and changes the numbers in a way that white becomes black and salt tastes like sugar 🙂 No matter what the truth is as long as the numbers are adjusted to support your agenda 😀

    Just look at Sweden’s Instagramgate and do the math.

    • Mark

      You don’t like the numbers but you haven’t said a single thing to counter the arguments. I just showed you how you made an utter fool of yourself by trying to be clever to support your racist agenda.

      The truth Farang is that you use statistics completely spuriously. You don’t take account of extremely obvious and extremely important information that completely skews the picture if left unchallenged. You arrive at this figure of 0.0126 as some kind of ‘racial characteristic’ by including all Finns, when in fact, most Finns will have little or no contact with black people (whites outnumber blacks in Finland roughly 260 to 1), while black people may have many times more contact with whites than with other blacks. If you are looking for a ‘national characteristic’, you would therefore have to estimate the number of contacts for each group and relate the assaults as a percentage of the contacts, and not of the size of population. That’s important to take into account, don’t you think?

      Actually when you compare the age group with the most problems, Finns outnumber Somalis by only 227 to 1, so the real figure is likely to be about 4% for Finns, which is about thirty times the rate for Somalis. I’m certain there are also other very important factors to take into account. Moral of the story = so-called statistics can be extremely misleading!

      It is very dangerous to use bald statistics from the Police as the basis for deciding on hate crime. That goes for us too and is why we absolutely must have regular surveys. The real issue here is that there isn’t a more thorough analysis – that’s criminal, given how important this issue is in the political arena and how these statistics are used or rather misused to support dangerous and scurilous myths.

      You have this awful habit Farang of just jumping in with both feet and landing in cow pat!

  7. Farang

    Mark,

    So now you use statistics to prove that it’s somehow more acceptable for Somali to attack a Finn racially than vice versa?

    That’s the feeling I get from your post. As you say that Somalis are more propable to get in contact with Finns, therefore it’s ok that Somalis attack Finns more?

    • Mark

      Farang

      So now you use statistics to prove that it’s somehow more acceptable for Somali to attack a Finn racially than vice versa?

      Only a fool would think that is what I was trying to argue! Of course, it’s only a feeling. Because I didn’t say that and clearly didn’t mean it.

  8. khr

    Can’t find the error Farang? I’ll offer a helping hoof…

    That there’s exactly one finn-somali encounter for every somali-finn encounter is trivially true. So the basis of Mark’s calculations is not wrong (but it can be reached easier by recognizing the 1:1 ratio). The difference comes from the social dynamics. Bullies and thugs are not looking for a fair fight, but for situations stacked in their favour. Not every encounter is an opportunity for them – a typical situation is far more often in the favour of the finn-thug than the somali-thug. So assuming equal prevalence violent racists in both groups we could expect the higher number of attacks to be by native finns, just like observed.

    Simply taking the number of attacks per person overestimates the prevalence of racism in the group for the reason Mark mentioned. Using the 1:1 ratio underestimates it for the reason I mentioned above. What would be the correct numbers then? I don’t have them, and I doubt anyone else does either. I would not be surprised if it was fairly similar to both groups, as being an asshole is by general observation independent of race, sex or level of education.

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