Stop Hate UK are pleased to announce the launch of a helpline offering advice, support and telephone-based advocacy to victims of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Hate Crime. The service has been funded until March 2016 by the Equality and Human Rights Commission and will operate across England, Scotland and Wales. The national charity, founded in 1995, will work closely with the LGBT Consortium and other third sector organisations, local authorities and police commissioning areas to ensure the helpline is accessible to all who need it including those in rural areas.
Rose Simkins, Chief Executive for Stop Hate UK, said
“Our existing helplines have received increasing numbers of callers over the past few years and we are pleased to have provided support to so many people who have suffered as victims of Hate Crime because of some aspect of their identity. We hope that the launch of this new service for LGB&T people, introducing a varied range of reporting methods, will empower and facilitate more people to step forward to seek support.”
The Gay British Crime Survey (Stonewall/YouGov, 2013) found that 1 in 6 lesbian, gay and bisexual people had suffered from a hate incident or crime within the previous 3 years. However, only one third of these crimes and incidents have been reported. Various reasons for not reporting were given, including concern that they would not be taken seriously and fear of reprisal.
The Stop Hate UK LGB&T helpline offers people an alternative method of reporting with additional support if required.
People across England, Scotland and Wales who have experienced, witnessed or know someone who is experiencing Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Hate Crime can contact the LGB&T Hate Crime helpline on 0808 801 0661, or visit our website www.stophateuk.org, for support and information. The helpline is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year; calls are free from landlines and most mobiles but we can always call you back if you want.
Calls are confidential and ongoing support will be offered. Referrals to other services, including the police, are made where consent has been given by the victim. Callers can also report hate crimes and incidents by text, text relay, web chat, online forms, post and email.