From: Les Tostevin, On behalf of Hastings and Rother Rainbow Alliance Committee
Not surprisingly there has been a mixed reaction to the news that Sussex Police has spent £750 on colourful livery for two cars to be used at local Pride events, as well as being used for normal service.
The Observer didn’t appreciate a need for the police to ‘visually demonstrate its support for LGBT people’ in this way, suggesting that the presence of police cars at Pride should be enough. As the local Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans Organisation we wish this was true. But hate crime against LGBT people is increasing and most of it isn’t reported to the police, not least because victims are not being sure that it will be treated seriously by them.
This colourful livery is an inexpensive way for the police to give a very positive message to LGBT people that they are concerned about our welfare. If it results in just one more person reporting a homophobic attack, because they feel more confident to do that, then the expense will have been worth it.