Hertfordshire Constabulary’s LGBTQ+ Committee members joined other local authority representatives on Tuesday 15 August at County Hall in Hertfordshire for a flag raising ceremony.
This comes as Herts Pride is set to take to the stage at Cassiobury Park in Watford this Saturday 19 August. The event will be taking place from 12pm and going on late into the evening.
Hertfordshire Constabulary will have a stall between 12-6pm where hate crime officers, members of the DEI (Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion) team, our LGBTQ+ liaison officers and local the Safer Neighbourhood Team will be on hand to offer support to diverse communities across Hertfordshire.
The Herts Police LGBTQ+ Network is a support group that works to help the county’s LGBTQ+ community. It achieves this through regular contact with local LGBTQ+ groups and raising awareness throughout the year about LGBTQ+ hate crime. Members of the group also give operational advice to colleagues working on cases affecting the LGBTQ+ community.
Saturday’s stall will be run by members of the Network as well a number of the constabulary’s LGBTQ+ Liaison Officers – many of whom are also from the LGBTQ+ community and are part of the Network. Their role is to provide an extra layer of support for victims who report hate crimes or hate incidents and they are specially trained to carry out the role.
Chief Inspector Steve Alison, who is Chair of the Herts Police LGBTQ+ Network, said: ‘We are delighted to be joining forces with Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service as well as the local council in supporting this event for our diverse communities.
‘It is important for everyone to feel included, and we will be in attendance as a force on Saturday offering the other side of policing. We want to engage with our local communities across the county and be there to offer our help and support.
‘Our Network also has an internal focus and we are passionate about creating and nurturing a diverse and inclusive work environment. If you’re thinking about joining the police, whether as an officer or in a staff role, we’d be more than happy to have a chat with you about the opportunities available.
‘We wish the LGBTQ+ community a safe and happy Pride and we look forward to celebrating with you on Saturday.’
Reporting hate crime
Hate crimes are crimes like any other, but that have the added distinction that the victim was targeted because of their disability, race, religion, sexual orientation or transgender identity.
Victims and witnesses can report incidents to police without fear via the non-emergency number 101, online at herts.police.uk/Report or 999 if a crime is on-going. Victims can be reassured that they will be taken seriously and treated with sensitivity.
For more information about hate crime, including how to report it and where to get support go to hertsagainsthate.org.
How to contact an LGBTQ+ Liaison Officer
Did you know, that any victim of a crime can request a LGBTQ+ liaison officer?
LGBTQ+ Liaison Officers can be reached by calling the non-emergency number 101 or online at herts.police.uk/contact. In an emergency or if a crime is on-going, report it immediately via 999. The support of an LGBTQ+ Officer can then be requested if required. Officers will treat what you tell them sensitively and in confidence.
To contact an LGBTQ+ Officer in your local area for non-urgent advice ring 101 and ask to leave a message for them to contact you.