LGBT Bristol supports victims of homophobic and biphobic hate crime -sexual orientation (LGB), and transphobic hate crime -gender identity (Trans/Non Binary/T+) cases, we also support you if you are Questioning or unsure. Our Hate Crime caseworker is Johanna Jenkins and she can be contacted directly:
Mon – Wed 9:30 – 2:30 : 07486 460 369
Bristol Hate Crime and Discrimination Services
Hate Crime, Report it, Stop it!
Freephone: 0800 171 2272
Bristol Hate Crime and Discrimination Services are delivered by these organisations working together:
- SARI (Stand Against Racism and Inequality)
- LGBT Bristol, supported by the Diversity Trust (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans communities)
- Brandon Trust (work with disabled people)
- Bristol Mind (for better health)
- Avon and Bristol Law Centre (for Discrimination advice and support)
- Bristol Mediation (for support with conflict)
When a hate crime is reported to the reporting line at SARI, a caseworker from one of these four organisations will be allocated to the case.
What is Hate Crime?
A crime motivated by prejudice against a person because of their:
- Ethnicity or race
- Disability, including mental health & learning difficulties
- Sexual orientation
- Gender identity
- Religion or belief
- Age, gender, marital or pregnancy status
- OR because they are perceived by the perpetrator to belong to one of the above groups
Hate Crime can be :
- a physical attack, like hitting
- name calling, verbal abuse or bad gestures
- threats, harassment, intimidation, humiliation or degradation
- vandalism or criminal damage to your property
- nasty letters, leaflets, posters, graffiti
- threatening emails, cyber-bullying, texts or phone calls
How does Hate Crime affect people?
Hate crime affects the individual in every area of their life, work, school and home. People who experience such crime may feel guilty, humiliated and too embarrassed to complain. Stress may lead to emotional and physical symptoms such as a loss of self-confidence, loss of sleep and headaches. More serious physical and mental health problems may develop:
- Feeling isolated and vulnerable
- Feeling that your self -respect has been taken away from you
- Feeling embittered, angry or frustrated
- Having a sense of self-blame
- Protecting yourself but finding yourself on the wrong side of the law
- Loss of faith in the police and criminal justice system
- Feeling like retaliating but fearing reprisals
- A break-down in family relationships
- Finding it difficult to cope
- Having a sense of despair
- Finding that nobody believes you
- Feeling hated by others
- Feeling afraid to let your children out
- Feeling afraid to go out so staying in
- Suffering from emotional/mental stress
- Finding it hard to cope with daily activities, concentrate or remember things
- Having ‘flashbacks’ to the incident or experiencing nightmares.
Why people don’t report:
• I don’t want the hassle
• It will go away if I ignore it
• This must be normal behaviour
• I will get used to it
- There might be repercussions
- might be called a troublemaker
- This is probably just a few isolated incidents
- I can handle it myself
- Nothing is going to be done anyway
- I don’t want to get anyone into trouble
- It might affect my career
How Reporting helps:
- Hate Crime is rarely a one-off incident, reporting can stop repeated incidents.
- Crime can have a devastating psychological effect on you.
- Feeling insecure and isolated can affect your anxiety and sleep levels.
- Reporting it means that the relevant authorities can provide the right resources in the right places.
- To stop them from hurting others after they have hurt you.
How does Hate Crime affect LGBT+ communities?
A homophobic or biphobic hate crime is:
“Any criminal offence which is perceived, by the victim or any other person, to be motivated by a hostility or prejudice based on a person’s actual or perceived sexual orientation.”
Likewise, a transphobic hate crime is:
“Any criminal offence which is perceived, by the victim or any other person, to be motivated by a hostility or prejudice against a person who is or is perceived to be transgender.”
This means that both types of crime can be committed against anyone, irrespective of their sexual orientation or gender identity, by someone who thinks you may be lesbian, gay, bisexual or trans.
We are finding that LGBT+ hate crime takes on many different forms, from on-going subtle homophobic language and behaviour by a neighbour to suggestive harassment from a stranger on a bus to being physically attacked in a public place or at home. Our role is to support and liaise with services so that individuals have an advocate and can be offered good practical advice.
We aim to ensure that we are making this a visible problem and not one that we just tolerate. The law has changed, the police are much more aware of hate crime. It’s your decision to report a hate crime to the police –and you can get help from us without the police being involved. But if nobody knows about the crime, nothing will be done to stop it happening again. The good news is that you can report a hate crime without having to speak to the police directly. ‘Third party reporting’ – this means that you can report a crime to us and we’ll let the police know for you. This can be done anonymously if you don’t want the police to know your name.
Sadly, while Bristol has been recognised as one of the best Cities to live in the UK, there are still many incidents of hate crime or incidents motivated by racism, disablism, homophobia or transphobia. We see that the vast majority of hate crimes go unreported and understand there are many reasons for this, but we also know that you can help to change this by providing your experience as evidence.
If you could, please forward this or share with friends, family, colleagues and others so that everyone understands that there is no place for hate crime in our great City. If you or anyone you know is the target of homophobia, biphobia and/or transphobia, please contact us.
Useful resource listings:
The Counselling Directory (professional support)
Have you been affected by hate crime or harassment because you are: Lesbian Gay, Bisexual, Transgender or Questioning your sexual orientation or gender identity?
Would you like to stop this happening again to you or anyone else? LGBT Bristol is looking for volunteers to join the Bristol Hate Crime Services – Service User Strategic Group.
Email Johanna@lgbtbristol.org.uk to find out more.