Hertfordshire Constabulary pledges support for Bi Visibility Day
PUBLISHED: 11:10 23 September 2016 | UPDATED: 11:10 23 September 2016
Senior officers and the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner pledged their support for Bi Visibility Day at the police headquarters in Welwyn Garden City.
Bi Visibility Day, which is in its 18th year, is an international campaign to provide a platform for the bisexual community to raise awareness of the social, economic and cultural prejudices they can face.
The officers included temporary Deputy Chief Constable Bill Jephson, force lead for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues, Chief Superintendent Matthew Nicholls and Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner David Gibson.
The day was also supported by PC Mark Smith, chair of the Herts Police LGBT network, and committee member Sergeant Steve Alison.
Deputy Chief Constable Bill Jephson said: “I was delighted to take part today in formally recognising Bi Visibility Day for the second year running as we are determined that the Constabulary fully supports equality and diversity by eliminating discrimination, prejudice and offering equal opportunities to all.
“We understand the reasons why bisexual people might not feel comfortable in coming out or being themselves in a work place setting.
“However the work the force has been undertaking to support Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender communities, both in and outside the Constabulary over the past year is very much inclusive of bisexual communities and we wanted to use today as a platform to make that clear.
“We recognise the value of having a diverse workforce that represents the communities we serve and are keen to better understand the issues facing our bisexual staff and officers.”
LGBT rights charity Stonewall published a report which found bisexual people often failed to access initiatives put in place to support them, due to being confronted with biphobic assumptions and double discrimination because people thought they must be gay or straight.
David Gibson said: “The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner is very happy to continue to support Bi Visibility Day as it is crucial that the force’s bisexual officers have a voice, are supported when necessary and should not feel they have to hide their true selves away.”
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