This police force just unveiled a rainbow car to tackle hate crime

PinkNews logo with white background and rainbow corners

Hampshire Police Force has released a new Pride-themed police car to raise awareness of LGBT hate crimes.

In the UK, around 100 LGBT hate crimes are recorded each week by police. Action is being taken in order to try to reduce this.

The office of the Police and Crime Commissioner has been working closely together with Hampshire Constabulary and the LGBT communities in order to try and gain more trust within policing.

In order to do so, Hampshire Police have unveiled their new Ford Focus that wears the existing artwork of Hampshire Constabulary’s established Lesbian and Gay Liaison Officers (LAGLO).

Chief Inspector Julie Fry, Chair of the force’s LGBT Resource Group said: “This vehicle, which has been produced thanks to a successful bid for funding from the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC), will be used by police officers and staff to visit community events to raise awareness of how to report homophobic and transphobic hate crime incidents and other issues affecting LGB&T communities.

“A number of designs for the vehicle were considered for consultation with the force’s LAGLO officers, LGB&T staff, partner agencies and communities.

“The feedback we received was supportive of the chosen design with respondents wanting the vehicle to reflect the strong image of the existing LAGLO branding.” She added.

Simon Hayes, Police Crime and Commissioner said: “Hampshire Constabulary has consistently been recognised by Stonewall, the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights charity, as one of the most ‘gay-friendly’ police forces in the country. Despite this, I am informed that barriers sometimes exist between police officers and those from the LGBT communities.

“To help further strengthen relations between police and this community, I have funded this specially branded police vehicle which will be staffed by specially trained Lesbian and Gay Liaison Officers (LAGLOs).”

A homophobic or transphobic is any incident that is perceived by the victim or anyone else to be homophobic or transphobic. You do not have to be a part of the LGBT community to be a victim of this nature of incident, it is how you, or anyone else perceives the offence to be.

People of the LGBT community are more likely to experience crime, 1 in 3 lesbian, gay and bisexual people experience crime each year compared with only 1 in 4 heterosexual people.

“If you want to speak to someone with a greater understanding of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities, you can always ask to speak with one of our Lesbian and Gay Liaison Officers (LAGLOs), all of whom have additional training, skills and experience regarding these issues.” said Julie Fry.