Officers have less time to investigate violent incidents as they spend so much time focusing on hate crime, according to a police leader.
Richard Cooke, chairman of the West Midlands Police Federation, warned that the diminishing number of officers due to budget cuts has created a ‘genuine crisis in public safety’.
And he hit out at Home Secretary Sajid Javid, who has suggested that misogyny and ageism should be listed as hate crimes.
Mr Javid has asked the Law Commission to rule on whether they should be added to the hate crime umbrella.
Noting that police have recorded hate crime for some years, Mr Cooke wrote in the Telegraph: ‘We all abhor and want to end genuine crimes motivated or aggravated by intolerance and prejudice.
‘They should be investigated, and those who commit them should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, as should those who incite them.’
However, he indicated his belief that officers should not act on ‘a builder’s wolf whistle or an insensitive comment towards an elderly driver’.
He added: ‘I do not believe for one second that this is what the public, outside of the politically correct ‘court of Twitter’, expects or wants us to do.
‘Let us focus urgently on genuine crime, supported by basic evidence. Let’s not encourage people to think we can solve deep social problems or give impolite people manners.’
Mr Cooke said he fears that resources could be ‘skewed further and further away’ from crimes that affect public safety, such as burglary.
Recent figures have shown a sharp increase in hate crime, particularly after the EU referendum and the Westminster terror attack.