Hate crime case study: ‘I’ve been groped and beaten’

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Jacq Kelly, 29, a policy officer from Gorgie, has experienced dozens of hate crimes in Edinburgh. Ms Kelly, who is registered blind and is also gay, talked about being groped, hit and verbally assaulted.

She said: “I’ve experienced so many incidents over the years.

“A couple of years ago in a bar in Leith a drunk guy asked me about my stick. I politely explained I didn’t want to talk about it and walked away, but he shouted after me: “F*** off you blind c***.

“Another time I was in a bar when a guy came over and told me well done for still getting out and about. I said blind people could still have a good social life, when he suddenly smacked me about the head. Then he did it again. I think he didn’t believe I could see him.

“On Leith Walk I got [abuse] all the time. They’d throw things, somebody groped me. This happened on a daily basis.

“I feel sometimes that I would never be out of the police station if I reported everything, and thousands of incidents probably go unnoticed.”