The iniative, using posters displayed inside the company’s fleet of vehicles, is aimed at raising public awareness of the crime and encouraging victims and witnesses to report incidents to the police.
Last year the force, in partnership with Stonewall Cymru, launched a drinks mat campaign across North Wales to highlight the issue. This year Stonewall and the police have enlisted the support of Arriva Buses Wales in an attempt to reduce the number of such incidents which take place on public transport.
The clear message from the bilingual posters is that North Wales Police will not tolerate the crime of homophobic abuse, whether physical or verbal, and will seek to rigorously work with the appropriate agencies to prosecute offenders.
Chief Constable of North Wales Police, Mark Polin, who has taken the lead on equality and diversity within the force, said : “We take the issue of homophobic hate crime very seriously and will not tolerate such abuse.
“We welcome the partnership work with Arriva and Stonewall Cymru to raise public awareness of the issue and to send a clear message to those who would carry out this ugly crime.”
Dafydd Williams, General Manager of Arriva Buses Wales, said: “Arriva Buses Wales is always keen to work with our law enforcement colleagues to ensure that everyone in society is treated fairly.
“Where people feel that they cannot conform to this basic set of human rights, we will always support our police in bringing them to justice."
Jenny Porter of Stonewall Cymru, said: “It’s great that the police are working with Arriva Buses Wales to get this message across. I hope that victims and witnesses of homophobic abuse, whether it’s a physical attack or offensive words, will take courage from the posters and report those experiences to the police.
Victims and witnesses should contact North Wales Police on 101, if in Wales, or 08456071001 (Welsh line) 08456071002 (English line). In an emergency call 999. All calls will be treated in the stictest confidence.
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