Lack of confidence in societal support

RFSL Support ServiceRFSL

A yearly survey indicates low confidence in societal support among LGBTQI people who have experienced violence, threats and harassment. LGBTQI people are therefore less likely to seek support than the population in general.

Today, RFSL publishes the results of a series of surveys of LGBTQI people’s confidence in different authorities. The surveys focus on issues such as reception and knowing where to turn when subject to different forms of violence, threats and harassment.

RFSL has carried out six national surveys between 2008-2015 and the results clearly indicate a low confidence in the police, prosecutors and the social services. This influences the motivation to seek help negatively, which leads to an under-reporting of crimes and victims of crime not getting the help and support they are entitled to. Raising confidence is crucial in order for more people to get adequate support.

Homosexuals and bisexuals are more likely to experience violence than the population in general, and one fifth of trans people have been subject to violence at some point in their life.

– This is a democracy problem that can lead to health issues. An unprofessional reception of groups at high risk for crime can lead to a limitation of living space, says Frida Sandegård, president of RFSL.

Many say that they would contact RFSL’s Support Service if they were subject to violence, threats or harassment based on their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.

Äggkartong med ett regnbågsfärgat ägg

– There are advantages to having a support service for LGBTQI people. Many stress the importance of having a support service with experience both in violence and LGBTQI issues, says  Frida Sandegård, president of RFSL.

RFSL makes a number of suggestions in the report, for example increased protection and support to LGBTQI people who are subject to crime, strengthened coordination in community efforts with an LGBTQI perspective and that Sweden should fully comply with the victim’s rights directive.