Conduct of Victoria Police towards former AFL Coach Dean Laidly
Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (“ALHR”) is deeply concerned by the recent conduct of members of the Victorian Police in taking and sharing photos of a person being interviewed in custody.
Reports on news.com.au show pictures of the person wearing a blonde wig and a dress. ALHR is further concerned that members of the media (have subsequently obtained and published the photographs.
ALHR commends the swift action of Deputy Commissioner Shane Patton, who has identified the misconduct as a significant breach of privacy and informed the public that the Senior Constable responsible is to face criminal charges.
Whether or not the person the subject of the photographs identifies as trans or gender diverse is unknown. Regardless, the conduct of the offending Senior Constable and any colleagues involved in the taking or sharing of the images, sends a concerning message to a community that historically has had a troubled relationship with police. ALHR calls upon Victoria Police to reassure the trans and gender diverse community that their human rights andsafety are a foremost priority.
ALHR says this is an opportunity for Victoria Police to further support the trans and gender diverse community. President of ALHR, Kerry Weste, said:
“The act of a police officer secretly taking a photograph of an accused person while that person is in custody is extremely dangerous. It damages trust and confidence in the Victoria Police and it damages the community’s faith in the rule of law.”
“In this case, the act of the police officer in question is particularly dangerous in circumstances where the trans and gender diverse community already has a troubled relationship with the police, and yet relies on police for that community’s safety.”
ALHR invites Victoria Police to contact us about LGBT training for its officers.
To arrange an interview or for more information, contact: Matt Mitchell 0431 980 365 or email firstname.lastname@example.org