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Worcester Police Department
Wednesday February 18th, 2015 :: 10:15 a.m. EST

Community

Worcester to host LGBTQ training for campus police

The newly-formed Worcester College Campus Police LGBTQ Liaison Consortium will hold its first training day on Feb. 20th at Worcester State University from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Trainers will include representatives from the Office of Attorney General, the Anti-Defamation League, and the Gay Officers Action League. The day will also include a community panel with members from Parents and Family of Lesbians and Gays, Safe Homes, and Worcester Pride.

In 2014, Worcester City Manager Edward Augustus appointed two liaisons to the LGBTQ community – Jayna Turchek, the city’s Director of Human Rights and Disabilities, and Lieutenant Richard Bates from the Worcester Police Department. These appointments were part of Augustus’ comprehensive strategy to improve the city’s record on equality and inclusiveness. The goal of the liaisons program was to have specific people within city government that members of the LGBTQ community could reach out to for services.

As a result of these outreach efforts, Lieutenant Bates met with the police chiefs from the city college campuses to discuss forming a consortium of LGBTQ Liaisons and the chiefs where overwhelmingly in support of the idea. As a result, in November, the Worcester Police Department and campus police chiefs formed the Worcester College Campus Police LGBTQ Liaison Consortium. This group was formed to give LGBTQ communities at Worcester’s colleges and universities the same level of service from their campus police departments.

The training on Feb. 20th, which is being facilitated by the Worcester Police Department, will allow those campus liaisons to provide the most professional, relevant, and up-to-date services as possible. Consortium members include Assumption College, Becker College, Clark University, College of the Holy Cross, Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Services, Quinsigamond Community College, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester State University, UMASS Lake Ave. Campus, UMASS Memorial Campus, and Anna Maria College.

“Worcester has made great strides on human rights in the past year, and I’m proud our city liaisons are working to broaden that reach to our college campuses,” Augustus said. “Worcester is home to 35,000college students, and we should do everything in our power to ensure their time in the city is a positive one.”

Worcester has made great strides in LGBTQ rights and relations in the past year. In 2013, the Human Rights Campaign, one the largest civil rights organizations in the country, rated Worcester a score of 55 out of 100 in their Municipal Equality Index. After Augustus made improving the score a priority, and thanks to a host of improvements, including new laws passed by the city council and the outreach of both city liaisons, the Human Rights Campaign awarded Worcester a perfect score in 2014.

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Worcester Police Department
9-11 Lincoln Square
Worcester, MA 01608

Contact
Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 508-799-8600

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