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Feds to Cops: Avoid Gender Bias When Investigating LGBT and Sex Crimes

Feds to Cops: Avoid Gender Bias When Investigating LGBT and Sex Crimes

U.S. Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch is telling police departments: You can do better when it comes to crimes against women and LGBT people.

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The U.S. Justice Department today issued new guidance to law enforcement agencies across the United States intended to end gender bias in how police respond to crimes against women and LGBT people, specificlly those involving sexual assault and domestic violence.

Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch made the announcement in Washington, D.C., highlighting what she called the need for transparently clear policies, better and more intensive training, and systems that ensure both accountability and community responsiveness.

"While the brunt of sexual and domestic violence is borne disproportionately by women and LGBT individuals," Lynch said, "make no mistake: It is an affront to us all, threatening the integrity of our communities and violating the dignity of our fellow citizens."

The guidance -- which a Justice Department statement explained was developed in collaboration with law enforcement leaders and advocates nationwide -- is aimed at helping state, local, and tribal authorities do a better job investigating allegations of domestic violence and sexual assault.

"Gender bias, whether explicit or implicit, can severely undermine law enforcement's ability to protect survivors of sexual and domestic violence and hold offenders accountable," said Lynch.

Read more about the guidance from Attorney General Lynch here, from the Department of Justice.

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