UK: Transphobic crimes soared in 2014

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Transgender hate crimes increased substantially this year, figures show.

Eleven police forces recorded more transphobic hate crimes between January and November than the whole of 2013, according to figures released to the Press Association under the Freedom of Information Act.

Serge Nicholson, from LGBT hate crime charity Galop, said a third of trans people in the UK received transphobic abuse every year – the second highest of any EU country.

“As much as 80% of transphobia is not reported. So the rise in transphobic police recording can be viewed as encouraging, though it leaves us with mixed feelings. One transphobic hate crime is one too many.”

The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) acknowledged transphobic hate crimes had been “significantly under-reported”.

Chief Constable Jane Sawyers, the national policing lead for LGBT issues, said targeting someone because of their gender identity is “totally unacceptable”.

“We strongly encourage anyone who has experienced transphobic hate crime to report incidents to the police,” she said.

The Metropolitan Police saw offences against transgender people soar by 44% this year with 95 crimes recorded, up from 66 last year and 59 in 2012.

They included 53 harassment offences this year, 17 common assaults, seven grievous bodily harm (GBH) offences and seven assaults with injury, as well as rape, robbery, criminal damage and burglary.

Avon and Somerset Police recorded 38 transgender hate crimes between January and November, up from 22 in 2013 and 12 in 2012.

Meanwhile, Merseyside Police recorded 32 hate crimes that were classed as transphobic or motivated by a person’s gender between January and November, double the number of offences reported in the previous year.

Greater Manchester, South Wales, Durham, Kent, Norfolk, West Mercia police, Northumbria and Gloucestershire police forces also saw transphobic hate crimes rise between January and November compared to last year.