LGBT people still face hatred simply because of who they are, according to Stonewall’s Director of Campaigns, Policy & Research.
Speaking in the wake of official Home Office data which revealed that hate crimes against transgender people in England and Wales are growing at a faster rate than for any other protected group, and that there's also been a 25% rise in hate crimes based on sexual orientation, Laura Russell said: “While it’s possible that the increase is due to higher confidence in reporting, these figures are still likely to only represent the tip of the iceberg when it comes to hate crimes against LGBT people. From our research into hate crime, we know that four in five anti-LGBT hate crimes go unreported, with younger people particularly reluctant to go to the police.
“We have long been concerned about the impact which debates on LGBT-inclusive education and trans equality in the media, online and in the streets would have on our community. The significant rise in hate crimes against trans people shows the consequences of a society where transphobia is everywhere. We are still not living in a society where every LGBT person is free to be themselves and live without fear of discrimination and abuse.
“Stonewall would encourage anyone who’s experienced a hate crime to report it, and we’re working with police services to help LGBT people feel more confident to do so. We also need consistency across sentencing, ensuring that anti-LGBT offences are treated as seriously as other hate crimes. But we all have a part to play in making our society more accepting. Now more than ever, it’s time for everyone who cares about equality to stand together as one united community to ensure everyone is free to be themselves.”
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