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No-one who identifies as lesbian, gay, or bisexual should ever experience harassment or discrimination because of their identity or who they choose to love.
What are hate incidents?
Disability hate incidents are when someone has been hostile or violent to you because of your sexual orientation or gender identity. Hate incidents can include things like:
- verbal abuse
- written abuse (including text messages)
- online abuse
- physical abuse
- threatening you
- damage to your property or possessions
Hate incidents can happen anywhere, and they can be carried out by anyone. It might have been a total strangers, or someone you know very well, like your family. It may have happened only once, or many times over a longer period.
What about hate crimes?
A hate incident becomes a disability hate crime when a crime has been committed. Any crime can be a hate crime if the person targeted you because of your sexual orientation or gender identity. Hate crimes can result in harsher sentences for the offender.
The most effective way of stopping hate crime is by reporting it, each and every time it happens. If you live in Avon and Somerset, you can report it to us, and we’ll be able open a case to support you. If you live outside, there are lots of organisations that might be able to help you. You can also report hate crime to the police throughout the UK.
You can report a hate incident or hate crime even it it wasn’t aimed at you. You could be a family member, friend, neighbour, support-worker, colleague or just passing by.
You can be the victim of LGBTQ+ hate even if you’re heterosexual – if someone does something because they think you’re gay, bi, or trans, that counts too. You can also be the victim of hate because you are friends or family with someone who is LGBTQ+. For example, if someone targets you because you have a gay sibling.
What is homophobia?
The definition of homophobia is the fear, hatred, discomfort with, or mistrust of people who are lesbian, gay, or bisexual.
Homophobic hate crime can take many different forms, including negative attitudes and beliefs about, or prejudice against, lesbian and gay people. It’s often based in irrational fear and misunderstanding. Some people’s homophobia may be rooted in conservative religious beliefs. People may hold homophobic beliefs if they were taught them by parents and families.
Homophobic people may use mean language and name-calling when they talk about lesbian and gay people. In its most extreme forms, homophobia and biphobia can cause people to bully, abuse, and inflict violence on lesbian and gay people.
What is biphobia?
Biphobia is the fear, hatred, discomfort, or mistrust, specifically of people who are bisexual. Biphobia is a form of homophobia, but biphobia can also come from within the LGBTQ+ community.
Biphobic people may tell bisexual people that their sexuality is “just for attention”, or that they’re inherently cheaters. Biphobic people may use mean language and name-calling when they talk about bisexual people. In its most extreme forms, biphobia can cause people to bully, abuse, and inflict violence on bisexual people.
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PO Box 2454