Jun13

Celebrating diversity during Pride Month

CREATED ON // Friday, 13 June 2014 Written by // Tony Crandell

June is Pride month all over the world. We are asked to remember the history of the Stonewall Riots in New York, how far we have all come since 1978 and the first Mardi Gras in Sydney. This year, I feel strongly that there is a lot to be proud of.

Police officers across the state come from all walks of life and we actively encourage and recruit diversity into our workforce. We are proud of our diversity and our efforts to effectively engage with the range of communities and cultures within our local areas.

I am looking forward to supporting and leading a host of Pride in Diversity activities and projects internally to help us become a more inclusive employer, where all of our staff feel supported and comfortable. As a result of these activities, I hope we will recruit many more GLBTI allies in the coming months who will work with our Gay and Lesbian Liaison Officers (GLLO) to champion equity and fairness.

In a few weeks time I will be travelling to our Academy again in Goulburn to address around 200 new recruits on the topic of diversity. I will be introducing them to our policies and programs supporting GLBTI issues and I hope to introduce them personally to some of our new Region Sponsors. I want them to know that the NSW Police Force supports GLBTI issues across the state – not just in inner city Sydney. I am keen for them to feel proud to be part of an inclusive and fair organisation, supportive of diverse sexualities and gender identities.

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Our GLLOs have many things to be proud of – their achievements over the last (almost) 25 years is just the beginning. We have grown from a small team of four inner city GLLOs to over 150 across the state.

Our GLLOs are now also responsible for bisexual, transgender and intersex issues and they work with other specialist officers to assist young people and victims of domestic violence, as well as carrying their brief to maintain contact with GLBTI community groups. They do all of this in addition to their policing duties and for this, they should feel proud. But they should also feel proud to be police officers and the oath they have sworn to keep the peace – to keep us all safe from harm – is vitally important.

Some of our officers also identify as gay or lesbian– my hope is that they also feel proud to be a gay or lesbian police officer or that if they are transgender, intersex or identify as ‘queer’, or are currently questioning their identity, that they feel supported by their workplace and proud to be who they are.

For the women in our organisation, there are plans in process to celebrate 100 years of women in policing next year. This is an incredible achievement and the organisation is a far better one as a result of the efforts of women.

So there is indeed a lot to be proud of in June, and in every other month, but I wish you all an enjoyable and productive Pride month. Please join the City of Sydney and Surry Hills police on Saturday 28th June to celebrate Pride week at a community BBQ in Harmony Park – all welcome, starts at 12 noon.

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Tony Crandell

Tony Crandell

Superintendent Tony Crandell is the NSW Police Corporate Sponsor for LGBTI Issues.

Comments (2)

  • Jenny Chisholm

    26 June 2014 at 10:10 |
    I think what David Rook is saying is that GLO officers do a good job, but the problems within NSW Police, like how NSW Police are meant to investigate NSW Police (a big joke) and entrenched corruption in the senior ranks, and how NSW Police freely manipulate the system to serve their own ends - that's all there and so all GLOs can do is help gay people where they can, and that's about the best they can do.
  • David Rook

    14 June 2014 at 02:22 |
    I think the concept of having Glo's is good, and I applaud and support the good work of the few good police that I know still serve in the NSW Police force - but let's separate fact from fantasy as Supt Crandell paints this lovely glowing picture of how helpful NSW police are to gay people - but the reality can be quite different.
    In my case, Rose Bay Police acted illegally and set me up for an illegal arrest, that a magistrate found was illegal, and that same night Rose bay police belted my partner senseless - they kicked and abused him at 3am and told him to fuck off.
    We tried to get a Glo and here's problem # 1 with Glo's, there was 1 at Rose Bay we were told and they worked only a few shifts a week and as our complaint about Rose Bay police was handled by Rose Bay police - guess what - we were not able to access this 1 Glo - we never met and they refused us access to any other Glo's and would not let our complaint be handled by another station until we kicked up a huge stink.
    That's when we finally - after many emails, phone calls, an article by the star observer and letters to state and federal MP's we finally get a Surry Hills Glo - who was nice and helpful - but guess what - and this is big problem # 2 - in the final analysis NSW police are a highly organized bunch of liars and crooks - not all of them but most are - u can have the nicest most helpful gay friendly Glo in the force but it won't mean jack if u need real justice because - as in our case - we were up against a hardened bunch of crooked lying cops - and right in the middle of our investigation our Glo suddenly gets sent on 6 weeks leave - we saw him days before and he mentioned not a word of his 6 week trip and I don't think he knew he was to be sent on 6 weeks leave but he was and that was the end of our Glo experience - so if u want a shoulder to cry on then yes the Glo's are good but they have no power and in most cases can do nothing for u.
    So in the end we had to sue police as this is the only course of action that seems to have any effect - it's a very expensive course of action and either way the tax payer pays - police don't seem to give a shit - so a nice article Supt Crandell and I support the concept of Glo's but in reality their help is often flat out denied - as in our case and i have inspector Sipos's email where he says quite bluntly that he is under no obligation to make a Glo available - so what real help are Glo's when it is really needed?

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