Community News

Concerns raised about safety in city taxis at LGBT Community Safety Forum public meeting

Besi Besemar May 2, 2017

Concerns about personal safety in city taxis were raised by entertainer Dave Lynn at the quarterly meeting of the Brighton & Hove LGBT Community Safety Forum (Safety Forum) at the Queens Hotel last month.

He told the meeting about an incident he experienced in a taxi when he felt threatened and had to demand the driver stop and let him out.

Peter Wileman the casework manager at the council’s community safety team responded saying that the council’s licensing committee takes homophobic abuse very seriously and encouraged people to report all incidents to his team. He said the council’s licensing committee had recently suspended a taxi driver’s license for 3 months while they investigated an allegation by two gay men who claimed they had been homophobically abused by him in his taxi.

The Safety Forum agreed to write to all local taxi companies to see what LGBT+ awareness training they deliver to their drivers.

Speakers on the night included Sgt Peter Allan the Hate Crime Sergeant and Trans Equality Advocate at Sussex Police and the new CEO of Brighton & Hove LGBT Switchboard, Daniel Cheesman.

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The Safety Forum presented certificates for money they raised at the B RIGHT ON Festival during LGBT History Month in February for other organisations as well as certificates for money raised for the work of Safety Forum by entertainers from the Adult Panto (£3,814.02) and the Queens Arms (£610).

Money raised by the Brighton & Hove, LGBT Community Safety Forum for other organisations during the B RIGHT ON Festival, included: Sussex Beacon £2,870,98: Rise £106.05: Safety Net £216.79: Cancer Research £1,063.27 and MindOut £417.44.

A special award was presented to Kim Hobson and her photographer husband Graham Hobson for their help during the 17 day festival.

If you are the victim of a hate crime dial 999. If you are not confident to report to the police you can report it to the Council’s Safety Team

Or telephone the LGBT Community Safety Forum on 01273 855620.