Tributes are still pouring in for a trailblazing
police officer who passed away on Monday 2 January. She had
Julie Barnes-Frank served with Greater Manchester
Police for 30 years and was one of the first uniformed officers to
march at Pride. She later helped to set up GMP's LGBT network, was
awarded a Homo Hero award by the LGBT Foundation, and was the first
recipient of the Alan Turing Memorial Award in 2012.
Lord Mayor of Manchester, Carl Austin-Behan, led the
tributes, describing Julie as "an amazing person".
"She was someone who always got involved. She set the
foundations for GMP's approach. She worked as hard as she possibly
could to get LGBT recognition in the workplace," he said. "Even after she retired from the
force, I know she was very active and continued to volunteer with
the LGBT staff association."
He added: "She was one of the first officers to
actually appear in the Pride parade and that was a big thing. She
was an amazing person."
LGBT Foundation's chief executive also
commented on the death of an "inspiration". Paul Martin OBE said:
"Julie was an inspiration to many of us and
her passing so early is very sad. At a time when LGBT equality was
just a dream, Julie was out on the frontline, quietly and
oh-so-politely ensuring that LGBT police officers and staff were
treated fairly, and with dignity and respect.
"Julie was always a charming yet
determined LGBT activist and everyone from Chief Constables to
officers on the beat were persuaded to be kinder and more generous
to their LGBT colleagues, all because Julie was able to humanise
LGBT equality in a way that few could emulate.
"She was someone who many of us
admired and she has played an important part in our community's
history. Her legacy is a GMP that is more inclusive and equitable
of LGBT people. On behalf of the LGBT communities of Greater
Manchester, everyone at LGBT Foundation would like to say thank you
from the bottom of our hearts."
Smyth Harper, LGBT Foundation chair,
added: "Julie was a quiet whirlwind. She was passionate about
policing, and passionate about equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual
and trans people. She took that passion and energised it, blazing a
trail which brought about real, meaningful and lasting change in
policing, not just in Greater Manchester, but across the
"Over the course of her career,
Julie was an instrument for change in GMP. GMP was transformed from
being a service notorious for its prejudice against LGBT to one
that is now perhaps one of the most open and accepting police
services in world. It was a source of quiet pride for Julie that
each year, men and women from GMP and from police services across
Britain would participate in the Manchester Pride parade. It was,
and is, the biggest police contingent in any Pride parade, not just
in the UK, but across the world. That's just a small illustration
of the change that Julie didn't just witness, but was instrumental
in bringing about.
"The world is a little darker today.
Our community has lost one of our most important activists,
although she would have been mortified to be described as such. But
as we mourn, we can also celebrate because Julie left a legacy.
Julie made a difference."
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