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Northumbria Police hold event in support of IDAHOBIT day 2018

17 May 2018 09:00 AM

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Northumbria Police is teaming up with partner organisations to hold an event in support of International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT), to raise awareness of hate crime and offer advice and support.

The event will be held today (May 17) in Newcastle Central Station from 10am onwards, where we will have a team of people ready to offer advice and answer any questions you may have around hate crime.

IDAHOBIT is a day all about raising awareness of the discrimination still faced by the LGBT community, both in the North East and throughout the world.

In the UK this discrimination continues despite progressive legislation such as the introduction of same sex marriage, with reports of hate crimes increasing by around 276 per cent in the past three years.

Detective Constable Matt Murray, Chair of the LGBT+ Community, said: “We have run similar events in the past and received a fantastic reception and turn out from members of the community. It's a really relaxed environment and the perfect chance to engage with officers, and discuss any concerns you have about hate crime.

“It’s really important we raise awareness in the help and support out there for anyone who has been the victim of hate crime. If you're at Central Station on the day and see our officers and our partners, then please stop and speak to us, we are here to help and support you in any way we can.”

This event comes ahead of Northern Pride which is only a couple of months away and builds on the fantastic work that’s been done across the North East which saw all three of the emergency services in the Stonewall Top 100.

“We’re incredibly proud of this fact and as a force want to continue to improve. If you see us, come and say hello or you can follow what we’re doing on the night at our Twitter @NPLGBT.”

Dame Vera Baird QC, Police and Crime Commissioner for Northumbria, said: “We want all local people to feel valued and safe, listened to if they need support and to definitely get that support.

“Being a victim of hate crime is hurtful and can be damaging and no one should be discriminated against, threatened or suffer abuse for who they are.

“Northumbria Police will not tolerate hate crime of any type, our officers will investigate such crimes and support victims.”

The force is supporting IDAHOBIT as part of the campaign ‘Being you is not a crime. Targeting you is’, which is aimed at encouraging people to come forward and speak to police or safe reporting organisations about hate crime.

Our bespoke team attending is made up of community engagement teams, cadets and volunteer special constables who all have specific training and knowledge about issues affecting our diverse communities.

We will also be joined by representatives of Virgin Trains, British Transport Police, Tyne and Wear Fire Service, Victims First Northumbria, and Newcastle City Council.

Sergeant Jim Walsh from British Transport Police said “Everyone has the right to travel safely on the rail network whatever their gender identity, sexual orientation or any other perceived difference.

“We will be standing together today to say it’s not ok to be abused, harassed or even assaulted because of who you are, what you look like or who you love. 

“We simply won’t stand for it. It’s not a crime to be different but it is a crime to abuse or intimidate someone because of who they are.

“If you do experience or witness any kind of hate crime we are here for you. We’ll take you seriously no matter what has happened.

“We’ll always be there to listen and believe what you tell us and will we do everything we can to find those responsible.”

Rob McCarthy, Regional Service Delivery Manager of Virgin Trains said: “Customer safety and security is the highest priority for us so we’re delighted to be working with Northumbria Police and British Transport Police.

"It’s a great opportunity for customers to engage with a whole host of organisations and learn more about the impact of Hate Crime and the crime preventative measures we have in place.”

For information on different types of hate crime and advice on how to report it, including specific information about third party and safe reporting schemes in your area, please visit:

http://www.northumbria.police.uk/advice_and_information/advice_for_victims_of_crime/hate_crime/