Police Cuts Will Undermine The Fight Against Hate Crime

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2011 National LGBT Conference
8 August 2011
Carried as Amended

YouGov research has shown that one in five lesbian, gay and bisexual people have experienced a homophobic hate crime or incident in the last three years. And three in four of those didn’t report them to the police. A third of victims don’t report incidents because they don’t think the police would or could do anything about it.

Numerous police forces across the United Kingdom have introduced Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Liaison Officers. The title differs from force to force as does the level of training and service provision. However, the role applies to both Police Officers and Police Staff who usually volunteer their services outside of rostered working hours and do not receive any payment for this role. The role of the LGBT Liaison Officer varies, but is generally to work visibly in the community to build relationships and encourage the reporting of hate crime.

Conference notes the cuts in police spending will result in cuts in police officers, staff and services. Conference is concerned that these cuts will have an adverse impact to the LGBT community and undermine the fight against hate crime. Conference is further concerned that pressures on police staff and services will result in a reduction of LGBT Liaison Officers able to volunteer time to the role and the impact that this would have on the fight against hate crime.

Conference calls on the National LGBT Committee, working with relevant structures of the union, to:

1.Gather data from regions about the current status of provision for LGBT Liaison Officers and the positive impact that they have on reducing hate crime and supporting communities;

2.Campaign to support the retention of these roles and services that play a vital role in the fight against hate crime.

3. Coordinate a national campaign to support the reporting of LGBT hate crime, which will also help ensure the continuation of these vital liaison roles.