REPORT TABLED – GAY AND TRANSGENDER HATE CRIMES BETWEEN 1970 AND 2010

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An Upper House committee inquiring into Gay and Transgender hate crimes between 1970 and 2010 has tabled its report, calling for the inquiry to be re-established in the 57th Parliament.

The report follows calls from the community for a parliamentary inquiry into the at least 88 murders of gay and transgender people over the period 1970 to 2010, of which almost 30 still remain unresolved. The inquiry follows a landmark community report by ACON ‘In Pursuit of Truth and Justice’ and the NSW Police Strike Force Parabell report.

Chair of the Inquiry, the Hon. Shayne Mallard MLC, welcomed the report and the opportunity it had provided for the families, friends and community members of victims to share their experience with the Parliament and seek a sense of justice for the victims.

'This inquiry marks the first parliamentary examination of a distressing time in our history for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) community', Mr Mallard said.

‘The gay hate crimes, bashings and murders are a dark stain on our city’s past that need to be fully exposed for the sake of the victims, their families, friends and the community in general.

‘The committee sought to understand the LGBTIQ experience of hate crime and, in doing so, heard many stories from victims, their families, advocates and others seeking justice.

‘As we began to receive evidence, however, the committee became acutely aware that the time allocated for the inquiry was not nearly enough to examine all aspects of the terms of reference. To this end, the committee unanimously agreed to recommend that the Legislative Council re-establish the inquiry in the next parliament to give further opportunity for people to tell their stories', said Mr Mallard.

Mr Mallard continued: 'The committee made several other recommendations in support of this principal recommendation, as well as two key findings that reflect on the impact of and indifference towards violence and hostility directed at gay men on the protection of and delivery of justice to victims of hate crime, principally in the period prior to the mid-1990s; and the responsibility of the NSW Police Force to ensure that all its interactions with the public, including the LGBTIQ community, are conducted with both respect and professionalism'.

For a full copy of the committee's report and other inquiry documents, please visit the committee's website.