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“We’re Not Like These Weird Feather Boa-Covered AIDS-Spreading Monsters”: How LGBT Young People and Service Providers Think Riskiness Informs LGBT Youth–Police Interactions

Critical Criminology

Published online on


Research has suggested that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) young people are “at-risk” of victimization and/or legally “risky.” Relatively few studies have examined the social construction of risk in “risk factor” research and whether risk as a concept influences the everyday lives of LGBT young people. This article reports how 35 LGBT young people and seven service provider staff in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia perceived LGBT youth–police interactions as reflecting discourses about LGBT riskiness and danger. The participants specifically note how they thought looking at-risk and/or looking risky informed their policing experiences. The article concludes with recommendations for improving future policing practice.