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Definition of a Bias Incident


A bias incident is any conduct, speech, expression, or action that is motivated in part or in whole by bias or prejudice, hatred or bigotry and directed at any individual or group, or one’s actual or perceived race, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, gender, veteran status, or disability, that is meant to intimidate, demean, mock, degrade, marginalize, or threaten individuals or groups based on that individual or group’s actual or perceived identity.

This can also include conduct directed against an individual or group because of their association or advocacy on behalf of a member or members of a protected class and is defined as any non-criminal conduct which differs from a hate crime or harassment, in that no criminal activity is involved.

What is the difference between a Bias Incident and a Hate Crime? 

A bias-related incident may or may not be an indicator of unlawful discrimination or harassment depending on the behavior in question, and whether the incident is directed specifically toward an individual or individuals, and if the recipient of the behavior belongs to a protected group.

A hate crime is a criminal act committed against a person or property which is motivated by the offender’s bias against one or more of the following identities: Disability (physical, psychological, cognitive and chronic health), Ethnicity, Gender, Gender identity, Race, Religion or Sexual orientation.  Some examples of hate crimes include vandalism, assault, and arson. Hate crimes are against the law and must be reported.

If you believe you have been the victim of a hate crime, please contact Texas State University Police at 512-245-2805, or call 911 if there is an immediate threat to safety.