Today, DCTC joined with six other DC LGBTQ community organizations in responding to the Hate Crimes Assessment Task Force report released by the Metropolitan Police Department on February 26. Taken together, the Task Force Report, MPD’s response, and the community response provide an essential starting point to improving relations between MPD and DC’s LGBTQ communities.
In the community response, we thank the Task Force for their research and findings. In general, we agree with the recommendations that the Task Force put forward. Our recommendations are designed to build upon the Task Force report by offering concrete steps that MPD and community organizations can take that, over time, will allow for positive change in how LGBTQ-police interactions occur in DC. The community response also looks beyond the issue of hate crimes to discuss response to intimate partner violence in LGBTQ relationships, interactions with LGBTQ youth, and interactions with sex workers. We look forward to engaging with MPD to begin implementing these recommendations.
Finally, the community response offers three specific recommendations to the DC Council, including:
- Repeal Prostitution Free Zones and decriminalize sex work,
- Strengthen the authority of the Office of Police Complaints, and
- Hold annual hearings on marginalized community relations with MPD
UPDATE: A community forum to discuss the recommendations and next steps will be held at Casa Ruby on Wednesday, March 26, at 7:00pm. You can RSVP via facebook or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.