Human rights lawyers applaud Victoria Police apology to LGBTQI community but call for parliamentary inquiry into response to hate crimes
Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR) congratulates Victorian Police for issuing an official apology to the LGBTQI community acknowledging the historical harm associated with its enforcement of laws criminalising homosexuality.
ALHR’s LGBTI Rights Subcommittee Chair, Georgia Burke said, “ALHR welcomes this important public recognition of the unnecessary and unacceptable treatment of LGBTQI Victorians. . However, we call on the Victorian Government to commission an inquiry into the justice system’s response to LGBTI historical and contemporary hate crimes.”
“This apology means a lot to our communities and we at ALHR are very moved by it. But, as the Chief Commissioner of Police, Graham Ashton said, Victoria Police’s work is not complete; more needs to be done to ensure the police service prominently reflects all minority groups, including those within the LGBTI community”
“We ask the Victorian Government to use this historic apology as the gateway to commissioning an inquiry like the one currently taking place in New South Wales in relation to how institutions within the Victorian justice system have responded to LGBTI hate crimes.