Stratford Pride stall forced to close after abuse from public

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The Warwickshire Pride stall.

A STALL manned by Warwickshire Pride group was forced to close early on Saturday after volunteers received a tirade of offensive and homophobic abuse.

Members of the group, representing the local LGBT+ community packed up after just three hours at the Rother Street market following constant intimidating comments from the public and reported it to Warwickshire Police. Warwickshire police are currently treating the incidents as hate crime.

A statement from the group said: “Over 100 people walked past the stall or approached it subjecting the volunteers with abusive behaviour by either tutting, giving looks of disgust or making comments such as “that’s disgusting”, “I don’t wanna see that,” and other abusive homophobic comments.

“One person also approached the stall to say that he had nothing against LGBT+ people because it’s an illness that people can’t help catching.”

Warwickshire Pride organisers say the offenders were all adults, and that it’s unclear whether they were from Stratford or were visiting from elsewhere.

The Warwickshire Pride statement said: “Whether they are local people or not, this kind of thing should not be happening anywhere in 2018 and it highlights why Pride events are still needed.”

But the group has also said the abusive comments and behaviour won’t’ deter them from continuing to work for the LGBT+ people in Stratford.

The Warwickshire Pride statement said: “If anything, we are more determined to ensure that LGBT+ people in Stratford feel safe. For years, LGBT+ people in Stratford have told us that they do not feel safe there due to hate comments and looks they receive from people. We now fully understand why LGBT+ people in Stratford feel that way and will be doing all we can to ensure this trend does not continue.”

Warwickshire Pride officials have also reported the incidents to the Equality and Inclusion Partnership (EQuIP) who support victims of hate crimes.

The stall was held by the group to promote their charity as a fundraiser.

For the full story and reaction see the Thursday edition of the Stratford Herald.

 

  • Lucy

    To be honest I’ve not had problems around Stratford going out several evenings with 2 x transgendered friends. We have been to the Everyman cinema and the Vintner, both who were lovely to us and treated us no different. You get a few stares or groups of young blokes going “Evening ladies” and sniggering but I wouldn’t really report it as a hate crime. I got more hassle as a goth in Stratford in my 20s!

  • Liz Guilfoyle

    Everyone’s entitled to figure of speech

  • Jodie Dawson

    As a Trans’ / T-girl I go out pretty much one evening a week, every week
    with my friend (also Tgirl) and we’ve been fortunate never to have any
    issues. Also been out all over the country. I find the people in
    Stratford to be cool and friendly for the most part. Even get some polite smiles
    sometimes! Occasionally you see someone trying to get their brain into
    gear, but most people are easy going and to be honest, like me, to busy
    with their own lives to worry about others.
    The issue reported sounds a little like a tiny amount of fire and a lot of smoke – or a planned thing?

  • Lucy

    I think you get more abuse off people for voting to Leave the EU and I doubt I can report that to the police.

  • JD Hogg

    Disagreeing with drugging children to change their sex is a hate crime.

    Tutting at propaganda promoting sodomy is a hate crime.

    Burglary is not a high priority, we will email you a crime number. Have a nice day!

  • Ben Pate

    The older generation, who generally hold these opinions, are slowly dying off. Hopefully, as we move forward things will continue to improve, and we will become more tolerant of people’s belief systems, religion and sexuality.

    • Liz Guilfoyle

      That’s a bit unfair to say the people who disapprove with it are slowly during off..
      Everyone is entitled to have a say