Police to record instances of misogyny as West Yorkshire takes another step towards women's safety

West Yorkshire has taken another step towards a safer region for women and girls as the police are set to start recording instances of misogyny.

By Alex Grant
Wednesday, 1st December 2021, 11:52 am

West Yorkshire Police are joining a number of other forces across the country with instances of misogyny to be recorded from today (December 1) onwards.

Read More

Read More
Ask for Angela: Leeds to become "safer for all" as women's safety campaign launc...

It marks another milestone in realising West Yorkshire Mayor, Tracy Brabin's pledge to place the safety of women and girls at the heart of her policing and crime plan.

West Yorkshire Police is working hand in hand with the Mayor's office to improve women's safety in the region.

The act means when victims feel they have been targeted and are asked by police, in relation to all of the protected characteristics covered by Hate Crime legislation, they will also be asked if they feel it was motivated by their sex.

If the victim confirms this is the case, it will be recorded.

Mayor Brabin welcomed the move, which comes at the same time as a "priority" is created within the new Police and Crime Plan around diversity, equality, and inclusion.

“I said I would honour my promise to women and girls when it came to their safety, and I am delighted that West Yorkshire has now reached this important milestone. It may not currently be a crime and I know this is being reviewed by the Law Commission, but this is a significant step forward.

“No-one should be victimised for who they are and those who seek to discriminate in this way, should realise that they are potentially committing a hate crime. Over the years, misogynistic comments in particular, have been normalised in society, often providing a platform for more serious offences."

The Mayor also welcomed the inclusion of misandry alongside misogyny, recognising that 750k men were subject to domestic abuse in the past year.

The step comes after WYP recently received white ribbon accreditation, recognising workplaces trained to prevent and respond to men's violence against women.

Assistant Chief Constable Damien Miller, of West Yorkshire Police, said: "No one should ever be victimised because of their gender, and now we have started to record misogyny and misandry incidents and at the point of contact with the victim we will be asking them whether they feel what happened to them was motivated by hostility of their gender.

“We feel this is positive step in the right direction in identifying and investigating these types of incidents and ensuring that victims voices are heard, and their cases are investigated with the full picture to hand.

“We are training our staff in the Customer Contact Centre and officers to ensure they understand how to identify and accurately flag incidents of misogyny and misandry and we hope this will bring reassurance to those who report crimes of this nature that West Yorkshire Police does not stand for this type of behaviour.”

It is the latest in a line of steps taken towards making the region safer for all women and girls and follows on from the recent launch of the "Ask for Angela" campaign, designed to allow women and girls to discreetly ask bar staff for help if they begin to feel uncomfortable or unsafe in a venue.

The West Yorkshire Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Alison Lowe, said that a partnership approach with the Mayor’s Office and West Yorkshire Police had enabled the latest development to hate crime recording to happen.

“I want to thank West Yorkshire Police for working so positively with the Mayor to make her pledge a reality. Tracy and I were determined to get misogyny recognised and recorded as a hate crime and have made representations nationally to the government.

“As I said during our recent Hate Crime Awareness Week, more needs to be done and is being done, as this encouraging development shows. Inclusivity, diversity and equality, these are principles I live by, I carry them with me in everything I do, and I know Tracy is the same.

“We are all equal, we should all have the same opportunities and rights, and the right not to be treated differently because of who you are. This was and is a crucial step in the right direction in making those principles a reality for everyone living and working in West Yorkshire.”

Support the YEP and become a subscriber today. Enjoy unlimited access to local news and the latest on Leeds United. With a digital subscription, you see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content. Click here to subscribe.