Charleston is an attractive and desirable place to live, work, and visit. The city is also one of the most progressive in the South; however, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning, Intersex, and Asexual/Ally (LGBTQIA) residents and visitors still experience crimes and discrimination related to their identities. CPD is committed to the safety of all LGBTQIA residents and visitors.
Charleston Police Department (CPD) SAFE PLACE is a signage program being implemented around the city, where local supporting community members, businesses, schools, and organizations, have the opportunity to visibly display their support for the LGBTQIA community and work closely with the Charleston Police Department in an effort to encourage reporting and reducing anti-LGBTQIA crimes.
Participating entities will serve as locations supporting safe and secure places for LGBTQIA victims to go when they experience crimes, discrimination, or harassment. Calling 911 and waiting for police to respond is imperative for suspect accountability, reducing crimes of hate, and showing a citywide “no tolerance” policy toward discrimination.
In addition to the 911 police response to these type of incidents, CPD has LGBTQIA liaison officers who promote partnership efforts between the police department and the LGBTQIA community. These liaison officers can also be a resource in answering questions you may have.
CPD Safe Place Mission
To provide the LGBTQIA community with signage and resources that provide easily accessible safety information.
CPD Safe Place is designed to enhance the relationship between the Charleston Police Department, the LGBTQIA community, local businesses, schools and allies. CPD will provide SAFE PLACE decals to local businesses, schools, organizations, and allies encouraging those locations and entities to clearly post the signage at the entrances to their premise as a symbol of safety for the victims of LGBTQIA crime and a warning sign to those who would commit these types of criminal acts.
Displaying the CPD Safe Place Decal
Displaying the CPD SAFE PLACE decal at your location carriers some important responsibilities that will greatly assist in protecting LGBTQIA victims of crimes. The CPD SAFE PLACE symbol of safety will be recognized by residents and visitors and will indicate that your business, school, organization or premise is willing to assist and protect these LGBTQIA victims. To execute this concept effectively, the Charleston Police Department would like you to instruct your staff, employees, supervisors, managers, teachers, volunteers, counselors, and/or students, etc. of the following protocol:
Please apply the CPD SAFE PLACE decal outside the front entrance of your establishment, building, room, etc. (approx. 3-5 feet high, if possible). If there is no glass at your front entrance, the CPD SAFE PLACE decal can be placed conspicuously inside your premise.
Please allow these victims to enter and remain at your premise until City of Charleston Police arrive.
Please either call, or assist these victims in calling, 911.
Request for CPD Safe Place Decals
Safe Place Decals (4”x6”) are provided FREE of charge. These decals are specifically designed for businesses, schools, organizations, and allies to post at or near the front entrance to their premise as a symbol of safety for victims of LGBTQIA related crimes and as a warning to criminal offenders. Safe Place stickers are not to be displayed in private residences. Safe Place Stickers can be requested at CPD Headquarters, 180 Lockwood Blvd Charleston, SC 29403 or contact one of the LGBTQ Liason members, Senior Police Officer Terry Cherry, Senior Police Officer Ivery, or Senior Police Officer Jessica Hans, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 843-720-2470.