Dumfries and Golloway Constabulary have become the fifth organisation in Scotland to be given the LGBT Charter Mark award.

The award is given to organisations deemed to have taken action to ensure that their services are inclusive for LGBT people.

The award was presented by Pamela Clocherty, Charter Development Officer for LGBT Youth Scotland, to Chief Constable Patrick Shearer, at the first ever Dumfries Pride on 16th August.

Chief Constable Shearer said:

“Being presented with this award gives recognition to the force’s Personnel and Training Department directly from people who will use our service.

“By working in cooperation with both internal and external organisations such as LGBT youth Scotland and the Gay Police Association we have developed our Personnel and Training Policies and Processes.

“We have also worked hard to ensure that barriers, real or perceived, between the force and LGBT people are broken down.

“This has been reflected in how well we were able to meet the various criteria of the Charter.

“The Charter will form the foundation for developing future areas of work and will continue to involve LGBT people in the development of our policies and practices.

“By doing so we are keen to promote essential partnership working, together with along with the Council, NHS and Fire and Rescue Service, with the local LGBT Youth Scotland group to ensure that we continue to deliver positively and treat everyone with dignity and respect.”

Pamela Clocherty said:

“I am delighted to award the LGBT Charter mark to the Personnel and Training Department of Dumfries and Galloway Constabulary, the first unit within a Scottish Police Force to achieve their LGBT Charter mark.

“They have fulfilled the requirements of the LGBT Charter with distinction showing a firm commitment to LGBT equality and displaying a strong signal to other Police Forces and local organisations that equality and diversity are of paramount importance.”

Any organisation in Scotland can sign-up to the LGBT Charter of Rights, and work towards the LGBT Charter Award.

Lothian & Borders Police, East Ayrshire CLD, Amnesty International, Dumfries Youth Enquiry Service, Careers Scotland, UNISON are amongst those currently working their way towards their Charter Mark.