Surry Hills Police this week confirmed they are committed to retaining Gay and Lesbian Liaison Officers (GLLOs) at the station following reports they were planning to do away with them.
Superintendent Daryl Donnolley told Sydney Star Observer two GLLOs had been appointed to share the duties of the station’s former queer contact, officer Paul Morgan.
Morgan, who has been the main GLLO at Surry Hills for several months, had been on loan from a police station in North Sydney and had returned to his position there this week, Donnolley said.
Donnelley said Surry Hills Police recognised how important it is for the local LGBT community to have a regular contact point at the station.
However, he said he wanted to correct the misconception that Morgan was a GLLO full-time.
He said while Morgan was the station’s main GLLO, he did regular police duties as well, as will his two replacements.
News of Morgan’s departure triggered rumours throughout Sydney’s queer community that his position would not be refilled.
ACON’s CEO Stevie Clayton told the Star she rang Donnolley after hearing the reports.
Clayton said it was integral for ACON’s Lesbian and Gay Anti-Violence Project to have a regular GLLO contact.
We do lots of liaising with the GLLO. The GLLO sits on some of our committees here and we’ve been developing joint projects together, she said.
Without a regular GLLO that wouldn’t happen.
And Clayton said it would be insanity not to have a regular point of contact for community members seeking police assistance.
In other news, a Surry Hills police officer is standing trial over the alleged rape of a drunk man he escorted home from Oxford Street last April.
The Downing Centre District Court heard Senior Constable Joel Kerde, 37, helped the alleged victim into his apartment where he raped him, while another police officer waited outside.
Crown prosecutor Billy Purves said the key item of evidence was a semen-stained handtowel found in the alleged victim’s bathroom.
Genetic testing had shown the stain was extraordinarily close to Kerde’s DNA, The Australian reported.
Defence counsel Wayne Flynn said his client denied raping the man and that the alleged victim’s statements to police were inconsistent.
The hearing continues.