Responding to the news that two men have been charged with stirring up homophobic hatred, Stonewall chief executive Ben Summerskill said ‘We welcome the Attorney General’s decision to allow this prosecution to go ahead. We lobbied for a number of years for a specific law to protect gay people, matching offences against inciting racial and religious hatred.
‘Materials like the leaflets posted to homes in Derby create fear and inflame hatred and violence towards gay people. We uncovered a range of similar materials during our campaign to secure much-needed legal protections in this area.’
Following lobbying by Stonewall the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 created a new criminal offence to outlaw threatening behaviour or materials intended to stir up hatred against people on grounds of their sexual orientation. The measures were introduced in March 2010.