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Anti-LGBT hate crimes have more than doubled in the past five years, new data shows

Lily Wakefield September 9, 2019
mother of son who was victim of homophobic hate crimes

Madeleine told BBC Inside Out West how her son has received "homophobic death threats." (BBC)

The rates of hate crimes against LGBT+ people in the west of England have more than doubled in the last five years, new data has shown.

The figures were revealed by the BBC documentary series Inside Out West, which airs tonight, via Freedom of Information requests to police.

The episode will feature a gay football team, whose members have been called “child of the devil”, “faggot” and “paedophile”, and told to “burn in hell”.

A mother of a gay man in his 20s will also discuss the violence and death threats of which her son has been a victim.

The mother, Madeleine, told the BBC about when a brick was thrown through the window of their home, covering her husband in glass.

She said: “We had a letter a couple of days later saying whoever it is going to kill all of us and the dogs.

“Then we had the most recent letter which was a homophobic death threat. It was horrible. Really, really horrible.”

Her son was too afraid to appear on camera.

The data released by the BBC shows that between 2013/14 and 2017/18 recorded hate crimes against LGBT people increased from 19 to 55 in Wiltshire and 28 to 76 in Gloucestershire.

In Avon and Somerset, an area which includes Bristol and Bath, the number shot from 151 to 375.

LGBT Bristol support worker Johanna Jenkins told the BBC: “These days I have a lot more referrals. Whether this is because people are reporting more or if there’s more I really don’t know.

“All I do know is that the cases that I’m working on at the moment are far more aggressive than the ones that I had two years ago which is very sad.

“And the range of people that are being affected by the hate crime are from an 18 year-old lad to a 60-year-old man and everything in between.”

This year, data has also shown that hate crimes against LGBT+ people have more than doubled in the whole of England and Wales, and that transphobic hate crimes have risen by 81 percent in the UK.

BBC Inside Out West will air on BBC One West on Monday September 9 at 7.30pm, after which it will be available on iPlayer.

More: BBC, Hate crime, inside out west, police

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