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A partnership which aims to encourage members of the LGBTQ+ community to report hate crimes has been launched by South Wales Police and the SWP LGBT+ Network.

The scheme brings South Wales Police together with LGBTQ+ Cardiff-based venues to tackle the stigma of hate crimes and ensure the community are reporting incidents.

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Mary’s, Pulse, The Kings, The Golden Cross, Main Stage and Eagle have all signed up to host Cuppa with a Copper; where a South Wales Police officer will be available for people to come and report any issues they may have or for a friendly chat.

Superintendent Jason Rees said: “Reporting rates are increasing but still remain low. We are working to increase awareness of hate crimes and encourage victims and witnesses to come forward.

“My colleagues and I are here and are willing to talk, listen and be proactive with the community’s concerns and needs.”

This scheme is piloting within Cardiff’s LGBTQ+ night-time economy but the team behind it want to expand around South Wales and in other locations.

Superintendent Jason Rees, who is the Operational Lead for Hate Crime continues: “By creating this partnership, we hope it shows the community that we are here to help keep them safe and deal with any issues that they may have. We hope that as a result of this partnership we can welcome more LGBTQ+ businesses and clubs on board.”

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Haydn Price, owner of Eagle bar said: “A partnership such as this is an important and very sensible move. Our customers talk to us about what’s going on, we’re a small and friendly bar, but sometimes they get too frightened to speak up.

“Regardless of their sexuality or background we want anyone feel happy and safe to come in, mingle with officers from the partnership, talk freely and not have any concerns.

“We will be posting about the Cuppa with a Copper on our social media so people know where to come and feel happy to do so.”

Information about the Cuppa with a Copper sessions will be posted on South Wales Police social media channels as well as the relevant venue’s accounts. They are open to anyone who wishes to have a chat.

(Lead image: South Wales Police)

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