It must be seen as a hate crime
I WAS very disappointed that once again Bristol City Council under the cabinet member Councillor Gary Hopkins said a firm 'no' to asking the Safer Bristol Partnership to include 'age' as defined by the Crime Prosecution Service as being people who are 60 and above, in their hate crimes.
Of course when domestic abuse was first mooted as a hate crime, there were the same sort of refusals, but after a long period it was accepted that this does exist. Why is it so important for 'age' (60 plus) to be included?
Because it is one of the ways we show society that we do not approve of or agree with such things happening in our society.
Many councils do of course list age as a hate crime, and strangely enough age is mentioned in Bristol City Council's own website under hate crimes.
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Is it that someone in the Safer Bristol Partnership does not like their granny?
But this is too serious to joke about however, which is why I am grateful to the other Equality Forums who are supporting Bristol Older People's Forum, and the two councillors who spoke to me after the meeting.
I am also grateful to retired police Inspector Peter Howard from Croydon, who has launched a petition for new laws to protect the elderly. He says: "In the case of racist or homophobic crimes, police are required to pursue whether this is the motive behind the crime.
It is given a higher punishment as a hate crime. I would like to see the same applied to vulnerable elderly people".
He has set up an e-petition which needs to get100,000 signatures before it is debated in Parliament.
To view the petition go to http:// epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/ 27208. I shall be asking Bristol City Council if they will support this epetition.
Chair Bristol Older People's Forum