GLAN-Y-DON, NORTH WALES — The North Wales Police Department on Friday said that it will be reinforcing its commitment to equality and diversity by displaying rainbow flag stickers at police front counters across its jurisdiction to encourage LGBTQ people to report anti-gay bias-based crimes.
The rainbow flag is a well known symbol which is recognized worldwide by LGBTQ people as a symbol of acceptance.
“The force is committed to tackling all crimes including homophobic hate crime and the stickers, which will be placed in all front counter areas, are a further symbol of our pledge. We know that homophobic hate crime is still under reported,” said Greg George, the Head of Diversity Development for the NWPD.
“All police officers within the force are trained to deal with all types of crime however we also have designated Diversity Officers to support investigation and victims of such offenses. The force also runs a self reporting initiative where victims can contact the police without giving their name and details.”
“North Wales Police deliver a service to diverse communities and it is important that everyone feels safe and comfortable when visiting any of our police stations,” said PC Manus Sheridan of the NWP Gay Police Association. “Some individuals, for a number of reasons, may feel apprehensive of approaching the police to report incidents. It is essential that all members of the community feel confident enough to enter our stations to report any incident, from whatever background they are from.”
He added: “This initiative is a further sign of our commitment to the LGBT community that NWP are here and can be trusted to deliver our service without prejudice.”
In 2009, Grampian Police, one of the UK’s largest police forces, said it would display the rainbow flag in all of its offices to support gay rights. PC Derek Allison, Aberdeenshire division diversity officer, had said then, “It is a great way of advertising the Grampian Police commitment and understanding of equality and diversity.”