90% Of Transphobic Hate Crimes Go Unreported To Gardaí

STAD Report finds that most transphobic hate crimes go unreported due to victims thinking they will not be taken seriously by authorities.

A new STAD (Stop Transphobia and Discrimination) report detailing transphobic crimes experienced by 62 individuals over a 2 year period has today been released by TENI.

The types of offences included verbal abuse, threats of violence, physical violence, refusal of access to a commercial service, damaged property, sexual harassment, being refused a job/fired and rape.

The research was conducted by the University of Limerick’s Hate and Hostility Research Group.

Of the 57 transphobic crimes in the Republic of Ireland, only six were reported to the Garda (10%). In contrast, 75% of all transphobic crimes in Northern Ireland were reported to the PSNI.

It shows that victims of hate crimes in the Republic of Ireland are much less likely to report to the Gardai when compared with Northern Ireland where the PSNI have had much more in-depth training regarding hate crimes.

Of all the incidents that were reported to both the Gardai and the PSNI, only 1 respondent said the police considered it a hate crime (in Nothern Ireland). Of the 8 who reported the crime, 5 found the police to be either dismissive or neutral about the incidents.

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Psychological Impact

Only one victim sought professional psychological help when 6 stated the incident had a psychological impact. Some victim impact statements detail the psychological strain the crimes have caused them.

“Crying for hours, which my mother had to witness. It’s made me nervous elsewhere, I’m wondering whether similar problems will emerge elsewhere, either toilets or changing rooms, melancholy, sadness at the state of my native city, not being able to use these facilities which I often had frequented.” – 34-year-old trans woman.

“It has gotten me exceedingly down. I have been met with this sort of behaviour before – but it’s made me fearful of strangers and has really stayed in my mind for longer than I should really grant it. It’s just…tiring. So, so tiring to feel like you have to explain yourself to people you don’t know/don’t care about.” – 24-year-old genderqueer lesbian.

 

Recommendations

TENI chief executive Stephen O’Hare said: “It is widely accepted that Ireland lacks an adequate legal framework to combat this sort of crime. Despite recent observations from respected national and international human rights monitoring bodies on the need to introduce measures which are effective, proportionate and dissuasive, progress has been slow. This leaves many trans and gender-variant victims of transphobic hate crime with no obvious legal remedy.”

As a result of this research, TENI has made a number of recommendations that could help improve the crime reporting rates. These include training, improved hate crime and equality legislation and to build relationships between the police services and the trans community.

Read the full report here.

© 2017 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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