One in six gay or bisexual people – about 630,000 individuals – has been victim of a homophobic hate crime or incident in the past three years, according to a report to be published this week.
The alarming findings, based on a YouGov poll of 2,500 gay people and published in the Gay British Crime Survey 2013, will reinforce calls for the problem to be taken more seriously.
The poll, commissioned by gay rights charity Stonewall, found that two-thirds of victims of hate crime did not report the incident to anyone. More than three-quarters did not report it to the police. Fewer than one in 10 victims who did report hate crimes to the police said it led to a conviction. And half of victims who reported a hate crime to police said it was recorded with no further action taken.
There are also concerns about the attitude of the wider criminal justice system to homophobic hate crime.
Just a quarter of those who reported a crime or incident to the police were referred to a support group. And only one in five gay or bisexual people said they were confident that their police and crime commissioner would do something to address the problem in their region.