Sharp rise in homophobic hate crime, on London’s streets and online | London


When you walk around London are you subjected to physical or verbal abuse? Have you had a glass smashed in your face or been spat at for simply holding hands with your partner?

The chances are probably not. But for thousands of people from the LGBT community it’s something they have to experience while going about their day to day lives.

According to the Metropolitan Police, the number of homophobic hate crimes being committed in London has doubled over the last five years – rising from 1156 to 2079 in the 12 months to February this year.

For those victims, it’s not only unpleasant but also impacts on the way they act around the capital.

Chris Withers is a theatre technician, who has been subjected to a number of attacks – from having chips thrown at him near Waterloo to even being followed after leaving a club with his partner in Soho.

Talk to my straight friends, who without thinking, will grab their partners’ hand. There’s always something in the back of my mind of just being aware of whose around, where we are, and there are certain areas of London where I wouldn’t do that just in case.

– Chris Withers, victim of homophobic hate crime

It’s not just attacks on the street, hate crime is also happening online. Lukasz Konieczka runs a charity for young LGBT people and says social media is becoming a hotbed for hatred and abuse.

You have groups who they get tagged into, which features negative comments which are basically denying them of their right to having an identity. It’s so critical to identify that these hate crimes are happening when people get home, it’s something which is persisting throughout their lives.

– Lukasz Konieczka, Mosaic LGBT Youth Centre

Detectives at Scotland Yard say the rise in hate crime is down to people feeling more confident in reporting attacks, and always encourage victims to come forward.

While events like London Pride show the capital as a welcoming, tolerant and diverse place, it’s clear that some people still aren’t getting the message.



Source : http://www.itv.com/news/london/2018-03-29/sharp-rise-in-homophobic-hate-crime-on-londons-streets-and-online/

Website by DEDALUSWEB