Sean Neeson MLA said: “I welcome the introduction of this scheme to combat racism in Newtownabbey.
“This is only a pilot scheme and I would like to see similar initiatives launched throughout Northern Ireland on a permanent basis.
“It has been reported that no-one has ever been brought to justice in Northern Ireland for committing a race hate crime. The police and the courts must use hate crime laws to send out a strong message in order to stamp out racism.
Newtownabbey Mayor, Alliance’s Lynn Frazer said: “Racism is a massive problem here. In Newtownabbey alone, there have been 24 racist incidents in the past six months. The government must use hate crime law fully to stop to the scourge of racism in our society.
“This initiative is the first of its kind in Northern Ireland, and I hope that this pilot scheme is extended to run permanently here.”