ElectraI invite you to join us at Victoria Police in promising to stand up against homophobia, biphobia and transphobia as a part of International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO) on Friday, May 17.

IDAHO, which is celebrated in more than 70 countries around the world, marks the day in 1990 when the World Health Organisation removed homosexuality from its list of mental disorders.

Victoria Police is joining other community organisations as a partner of Victoria’s local IDAHO campaign known as ‘No to Homophobia’.

To show Victoria Police’s support, Chief Commissioner Ken Lay will make a public promise that Victoria Police will say no to homophobia, biphobia and transphobia. And, for the second year, the Victoria Police Academy will be raising the Pride Flag in support of IDAHO.

I am proud that Victoria Police has taken great steps to improve relationships with the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual and intersex (GLBTI) community over the last 10 years. But I also know there is more to be done. That is why supporting IDAHO is so important.

IDAHO has grown and developed over the years and now includes a biphobia and transphobia focus.

It is one of our greatest opportunities to reach out to our local communities and remind them that homophobia still exists. From a policing perspective we see this most commonly in assaults, robberies and property damage.

Many homosexual individuals also adopt homophobic behaviour, hoping it will protect them against prejudice and discrimination. We hope that in raising community awareness IDAHO can help these individuals feel more comfortable and stop this behaviour.

On IDAHO we should all join together, whatever our sexual orientation and gender identity, to promise that we will work together to achieve a prejudice-free community.

I implore you to support IDAHO. I want you to join me and my organisation to declare, publicly, that you promise to stand up against homophobia, biphobia and transphobia.

As an individual, or as a group within your places of employment, sporting clubs or community groups, make your declaration. All you have to do is take two simple steps to make a real difference.

1. Take a photo of yourself or your friends holding the promise text: “I/We will stand up against homophobia, biphobia and transphobia. Always.”

2. Upload your photo to www.notohomophobia.com.au

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