Task Force Asks Police For Formal Policy On Gays

Posted: October 06, 1988

Representatives of the Philadelphia Gay and Lesbian Task Force met for more than an hour yesterday afternoon with Police Commissioner Willie L. Williams and other high-ranking law enforcement officials to ask for a formal policy for dealing with offenses committed against members of the gay community.

Rita Addessa, executive director of the task force, called the meeting ''very positive," although she said her group's objectives had not been immediately met.

She said Williams pledged to take the task force's recommendations under advisement and to inform the group within six weeks of what steps the Police Department might take in devising such a policy.

Addessa said the task force wanted the Police Department to come up with formal guidelines for combating abuse and harassment against members of the gay community. The group also called for additional training for police officers to help them deal more effectively with gay concerns, Addessa said.

Capt. Richard De Lise, the Police Department spokesman, said Williams would be evaluating the task force's requests.

"It doesn't mean positive or negative, but he'll look at the requests and assess them," De Lise said.

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