Homophobic hate crimes reported to UK police has almost trebled in the last five years.
It went from 6,655 in 2014-15 to a staggering 18,465 in 2019-20.
It increased 20% in just one year (2019).
The data was collated by the BBC from all UK police forces via Freedom of Information requests.
While police told the BBC that the increase could be a result of more reporting, LGBTs and allies said that the rise in hate crime was a real increase in attacks.
The LGBT+ lead at the National Police Chiefs’ Council, Deputy chief constable Julie Cooke, said: “I could come up with lots of examples where we are getting it right.
“But I absolutely take seriously where we don’t. And we need to make sure that we improve and learn from those times when we’ve not done it right,” she said.
“It is hugely underreported. And so please do come forward. And if you’re not getting the right response that you would expect, please make sure that you tell us about that.”
But Stonewall chief executive Nancy Kelley said “We know that 80 per cent of LGBT people don’t report hate crimes. So this is really just the tip of the iceberg.