In the past few years, the Binghamton University community has experienced a good deal of race-related issues. In 2017 alone, reported instances included racist drawings appearing in multiple residence halls and a city resident shouting racial slurs at BU’s X-Fact’r Step Team while it practiced on Binghamton’s West Side.
Across the country, the data kept on hate crime and bias incidents is woefully inadequate. There isn’t a single reliable national database on hate crimes and bias incidents.
That’s why Pipe Dream is partnering with ProPublica, a Pulitzer Prize-winning nonprofit organization dedicated to investigative reporting, to document hate crimes and other bias incidents that occur on BU’s campus and in the surrounding communities. ProPublica’s project, Documenting Hate, is collecting reports to create a national database of hate crimes and bias incidents that will be used to inform broader reporting of the issue for news organizations around the country.
The FBI defines hate crimes as “criminal offenses motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender’s bias against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity, gender, or gender identity.” But even its database of such incidents is flawed, untimely and incomplete.
A bias incident, according to ProPublica, “is an offense motivated in whole or in part by the offender’s animosity toward the victim’s race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability or other protected status. It may not be considered a crime under the law. This could include incidents involving harassment or intimidation.”
Whether you are a victim or a witness, or you hear about a hate crime or bias incident secondhand, we need your help to track down these untold stories. Neither ProPublica nor Pipe Dream will share your name or contact information with any outside organization, including the University.
If you’ve experienced or witnessed an incident of hate or bias, please share your story with us below. A Pipe Dream or PRISM reporter may follow up with you for more details to the extent you are comfortable sharing them.
The Southern Poverty Law Center recommends that you also report any hate crimes or bias incidents to the police or other relevant authorities. Binghamton’s New York State University Police can be reached at (607) 777-2393. BU’s Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion can be reached at (607) 777-4775, and its incident form can be found here.