Hate Crime – We Must Report It

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2013 National LGBT Conference
10 July 2013
Carried as Amended

Conference notes that it is easy to be complacent about strides forward in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality. In the last 10 years employment rights, civil partnerships, changes to adoption law and the removal of Section 28 have all dramatically changed the lives of LGBT people across the country. Yet, despite this we are still witnessing a rise in vicious, violent, homophobic, biphobic and transphobic attacks. Evidence shows that the majority of victims do not report these to the police or relevant agencies involved.

Europe’s largest ever survey of LGBT people (online survey of 93,000) reveals that just over a quarter of LGBT people have been attacked or threatened with violence in the past five years. Some of the surveys most startling findings show that around 80% of the most serious incidents of violence suffered by respondents were never reported to the police, often because they did not believe the police would do anything to help them. 66% of LGBT people are afraid to hold hands in public with their partner and this rises to 75% for gay and bisexual men.

The evidence is overwhelming and at a local level we have also seen an increase of 30% of reported incidents. Furthermore, the nature and severity have become much more serious.

Conference therefore calls on the National LGBT Committee to:

1. Continue to update regions and branches who support victims of hate crime on the most appropriate way to report to either the police or specialist agencies;

2. Encourage UNISON regions to promote training courses for members highlighting these issues.