South Wales Police Authority has become the first Police Authority in Wales to achieve the Rainbow Mark from the LGBT Excellence Centre – highlighting commitment towards the needs and issues of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Wales.

In addition, South Wales Police Authority is also the second organisation to achieve the standard supported by the Welsh Assembly Government after Cardiff Local Education Authority.

By achieving the standard, the Police Authority has demonstrated good practice in working with, and having regard for, the specific needs, issues and barriers facing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Wales.

Lead Police Authority Member for Equalities, Ms Helen Roberts, said: “Achieving the Rainbow Mark is testament to our commitment in ensuring our work and services are accessible to everyone in South Wales. Our area is made up of diverse communities, and we embrace this in our work.

“Over the last few years, the equality area within the Authority has expanded tremendously, and is now part of all our work. This has been down to the efforts of Hannah Jenkins, the Equalities and Human Rights Manager within the Authority’s Secretariat, and I would like to pay tribute to her outstanding commitment and drive.”

Federico Podeschi, Chief Executive of the LGBT Excellence Centre commented: “We applaud South Wales Police Authority for their incredible effort in proving to the LGBT community their commitment to eradicating homophobia, biphobia, and transphobia as well as demonstrating great leadership in the achievement of better equality for everyone. The Rainbow Mark that the Authority now carries is a signifier of their support for LGBT people and an example for the ever-growing number of organisations that are joining our membership and working toward their accreditation.”

To achieve the standard, South Wales Police Authority met ten separate assessment criteria, including details on training, working procedures and Equal Opportunity Policies.

Ms Roberts concluded: “In achieving the Rainbow Mark, we have shown our commitment to equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Wales. We hope that it will instil confidence in the public and our workforce that we are committed to tackling inequality.”

The Rainbow Mark is an equality mark from the LGBT Excellence Centre. For more information on the centre, and the Rainbow Mark, call 0800 023 2201 or visit their website at www.ecwales.org.uk/rainbow.

The announcement the Authority has achieved the Rainbow Mark follows on from the launch of the Equalities and Human Rights Scheme for 2010-13, which sets out how equality and human rights issued will be tackled over the next three years. The scheme can be viewed on the Police Authority website at www.southwalespoliceauthority.org.uk.

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