The Lesbian and Gay Anti-Violence Project (AVP) has released a new campaign -“ On Any Street -“ featuring a booklet, posters and postcards designed to help combat homophobic violence.
On Any Street covers how to avoid violence, what to do in a confrontation and how to get help if you are a victim. Witnesses of homophobic violence are also especially being urged to come forward and report assaults as part of this new statewide campaign.
AIDS Council of Australia president Adrian Lovney said that recent public debate had drawn attention to ongoing homophobia which often spills over into incidents of violence; and that police research shows lesbians and gay men are far more likely to be assaulted than other Sydney men and women.
AVP coordinator Brad Gray agreed that homophobic violence increased around the Mardi Gras period, but that this campaign was designed to run for the entire year. We do know from previous stats and reports that violence increases around this time, he said. If there’s an atmosphere of homophobia around it can generate increased violence.
Gray said that the booklet was divided into four parts which covered protecting yourself; dealing with abuse and violence; being a witness; and what to do if you’ve been attacked.
The On Any Street campaign was produced by the AVP in collaboration with South Sydney Council, the Attorney-General’s Department crime prevention unit, NSW Police Gay & Lesbian liaison officers and Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras.
Booklets will be available in all the venues from this week and from AVP at ACON and the Pride Centre.
To report homophobic violence, call the gay & lesbian liaison officer on 9218 0000 (voice), 9211 3776 (TTY) or the AVP report line on 9206 2116.