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Homophobia: Prosecutions

Volume 464: debated on Monday 15 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what work her Department is undertaking to tackle homophobic crimes. (156447)

This Government take all hate crime including homophobic hate crimes very seriously. We have identified five priorities for tackling hate crime:

Increasing reporting

Bringing more offences to justice

Increasing confidence that hate crime will be taken seriously

Using local and national data to understand better the nature and extent of hate crimes

Tackling repeat victimisation.

This June the Government made £250,000 available through the victims fund to tackle hate crime and support victims. Over £100,000 of this money has been awarded to tackling homophobic and transphobic hate crime.

Since April 2007 we have asked the police to flag homophobic and other hate crimes so we can better understand the nature and extent of homophobic hate crime. The Race for Justice Steering Group works to bring more hate crime offences to justice, including homophobic hate crimes. In December 2006 we produced guidance to community safety practitioners to help them tackle homophobic hate crime.

We are also planning to amend the Criminal Justice and Immigration Bill to provide for offences to tackle the incitement of hatred on grounds of sexual orientation.