Met Police Commissioner warns against ‘complacency’ in tackling gay hate crime

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe has commented on new homophobic crime research by saying there should be “no complacency” in tackling the problem in London.

On Tuesday, Sir Bernard said: “I welcome the latest research by Stonewall and the opportunity to host the launch of their publication at New Scotland Yard.

“The MPS has made improvements in recent years, however there is no place for complacency and we must continuously strive to enhance the service that LGBT Londoners expect and deserve.

“We look forward to maintaining our engagement with Stonewall to reduce the harm caused by hate crime and increase the confidence of victims.”

A YouGov poll commissioned by Stonewall and released at the weekend showed that one in six gay or bisexual people in the UK has been the victim of homophobic hate crime or abuse in the past three years.

Compared to other types of hate crime, such as racism, the proportion of homophobic incidents are on the rise. 9% of all UK hate crimes in 2009 were homophobic, rising to 10% in 2010 and 11% in 2011.

According to a survey released in August, 75% of trans people and one in eight gay people have been the victim of a hate crime in the UK.

In April, statistics from the Metropolitan Police Service showed homophobic crime had fallen across London by 12.7% from March 2012 to March of this year – however, several London boroughs recorded a rise.