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The RCMP is surprised that hate groups in Canada are recruiting racialized people and becoming increasingly ethnically diverse.

In a report on hate crimes and incidents released this year, the RCMP noted about a notable shift in the racial diversity of individuals joining what it calls "hate groups."

The RCMP defines a "hate group" as any organization or collection of individuals "whose goals and activities attack or vilify an entire group of people on the basis of colour, race, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or mental or physical disability."

In its report, the RCMP blames the "rise of populist politics and the normalization of racist and incendiary political rhetoric" on the rise of said groups without pointing to specific examples.

The RCMP notes that while hate groups are still "overwhelmingly white and male" there's been a recent shift in the demographic.

True North reached out to the RCMP for comment but did not receive a response.

"People who join hate groups come from all socioeconomic backgrounds, professions, and, perhaps surprisingly, they appear to be increasingly racially/ethnically diverse," the report reads.

"In recent years, some hate groups in the United States and Canada have actively recruited members from racialized groups in an attempt to soften their public image and bolster recruitment."

The RCMP report links to a VOA News article titled "Why Some Nonwhite Americans Espouse Right-Wing Extremism."

"Spurred by shared resentments and hatreds, American Latinos, Blacks and other nonwhites are swelling the ranks of some of America's right-wing groups in rising numbers," wrote journalist Masood Farivar.

When estimating the number of hate groups in Canada, the RCMP report cites a controversial estimate by Prof. Barbara Perry who alleges that 300 hate groups are operating in Canada.

Perry has never published her list of hate groups and her employer Ontario Tech University has refused to release the full research.