Statement in Regards to Winter Haven Hate Crime

The Florida Commission on Human Relations

Deplores Winter Haven Murderous Hate Crime

The Commission speaks out against this hateful and vicious act in which a young man was brutally terrorized and murdered.

“The Florida Commission on Human Relations is deeply saddened and outraged at the news of Ryan Keith Skipper’s death. It has been reported that he was brutally murdered because of his sexual orientation,” said Derick Daniel, Executive Director of the Florida Commission on Human Relations. “There is no doubt that there are differences of opinion with regard to the issue of sexual orientation, but on one issue we all should agree, and that is that we will not tolerate malicious, cruel acts of hate.”

“The Commission would like to convey its sincere condolences to the Skipper family,” said Daniel. “We are very concerned about such senseless acts of intolerance and hatred that lead to loss of life, violence and damage to property. Florida ranks number two in the Nation in the number of hate groups being tracked. We can and must do better,” Daniel said.

The Florida Commission on Human Relations is the state agency charged with enforcing the Florida Civil Rights Act and Fair Housing Act. The Florida Legislature has declared that the purpose of these laws is to protect the people of Florida from discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, marital status or familial status.

Fair treatment, equal access and mutual respect are the benchmarks of the Commission’s commitment. The Commission works to foster tolerance and understanding in communities statewide.