Gay hate crimes increase across the capital

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Gay hate crimes increase across the capital
26th November 2014

The Metropolitan Police Service recorded 1,418 homophobic offences during the last 12 months, up 27 per cent from the year before.

Overall 25 of London’s boroughs registered a rise including Lambeth which saw a hike in reported attacks from 102 to 131.

The council’s hate crime coordinator Mark Healey said: “I think it’s always horrifying that these attacks take place but what I am pleased about is the fact that people who are attacked are reporting it straight away to the police.

“It shows how effective the system can be if we use it and we have to use it to make sure these people are brought to justice.”

The figures also reveals a 33 per cent decline in homophobic crimes in Barking and Dagenham as well as a 21 per cent decrease in Sutton and a 14 per cent fall in Merton.

Gay rights charity Stonewall warned that homophobic hate crime was "a real issue in the UK" and authorities must "continue to take this type of vile abuse seriously".

The charity's spokesman Richard Lane said:"It's staggering in this day and age that we have even one person attacked because of their sexual orientation but people are more confident coming forward to report it.

"That's a good thing because the police need to know where they need to target their resources and they need to know what is going on in the streets."


Nick Antjoule from Galop, the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) anti-violence charity, said: "It's encouraging that more people feel able to talk to the police, though the vast majority of hate crime remains hidden.

"Each year the police record over 4,000 homophobic crimes, but that's dwarfed by the 39,000 homophobic crimes that happen every year in this country according to government estimates.

"Many of the people Galop support feel silenced by abuse on the street, harassment online or prejudice at home.

"Some of our clients put up with harassment for years before contacting us for help."

Chief Constable Jane Sawyers, national policing lead for LGBT issues, said: "Targeting someone because of their sexual orientation or gender identity is totally unacceptable.

"This abuse affects people's right to feel safe, secure and confident about themselves.

"Police forces across the UK are committed to reducing hate crime and improving services to victims.”

Richard Lane from Stonewall, explains more.

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