Newsmakers: Hennepin Co. Commish Jeff Lunde Talks Anti-Hate Initiative
The Hennepin County Board of Commissioners approved $1 million of funding to kickstart an anti-hate initiative that would better track hate crimes.
“We’ve had lots of hate incidents in the state,” said Commissioner Jeff Lunde. “But there’s no good place to report them.”
The board action request passed by the County will address the lack of centrality in reporting and support services when addressing hate instances in Hennepin County.
“Right now people don’t know if something is hate or not and they don’t report it or they don’t trust the system. It’s kind of like domestic abuse. When a victim doesn’t trust police or doesn’t trust something, they don’t report it. But it still happened,” said Lunde. “So we’re taking the same approach to hate crimes or hate incidents and say let’s give the victim our full support.”
Lunde hopes the initiative will lead to a statewide “211” system to report a hate crime.
“We need a system, because if you aren’t in Hennepin County, where do you call? We need a unified system, a unified database for people,” said Lunde.
But ultimately, the success of the program will fall back on how much the community does something about it.
“The success of this program is going to be community led. So if the community takes it and runs, it will be successful,” said Lunde. “We really going to empower that.”
If you’d like to learn more about the progress of this initiative, Lunde says contact his office.