Plan to Deter 'Gay Bashing'

I read Gary Taylor's letter, "The 'Non-Existent' Problem of Gay Bashing," (Glendale section, May 12) with great interest and concern.

Mr. Taylor describes two incidents in the past four years in which he has reported crimes to the police and allegedly received unsatisfactory treatment when the police found out he was gay. Mr. Taylor's anger directed at the police represents the fear and resentment that causes friction between police and gay men.

Rather than perpetuating this sour relationship, I have brought the two groups together at two community forums in an effort to produce a productive and honest dialogue between the police and the gay community. In April, I introduced a seven-point plan to deter gay bashing and "AIDS-related bashing."

These actions include: getting more police officers on the street, requiring a city attorney task force to document all cases of gay bashing (Mr. Taylor may want to contact the city attorney directly if he has information on such a crime), asking for funds to help sponsor an around-the-clock hot line for gays to report crimes anonymously, requiring a report on police actions in the gay and lesbian community, and strengthening the city's AIDS anti-discrimination ordinance.

These actions alone will not stop the increase in violence that has affected some parts of our community. But I am hopeful that these are the important first steps to get all sides talking about the real problems and possible solutions. Name calling and shouting will not solve anything. Working together will.


Woo is the Los Angeles city councilman representing the 13th District .

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