Firefighters in Yorkshire have issued a defiant message to homophobes who abused the force for posting a picture of a rainbow flag.

To mark LGBT history month last year, South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue updated their profile picture on Facebook with the force’s logo on a rainbow background.

But the image was quickly met with a tirade of abuse from social media users, with one writing: ‘I can only hope somebody’s hacked your Facebook account and put this on.’

This year, the force has posted a video calling out the abuse, while updating its profile picture again with the flag and their cover photo showing an image of scattered scrabble letters reading ‘equal’.

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‘We don’t think homophobic abuse is acceptable and we stand with all those LGBT+ people we serve and employ.

As one worker hands out leaflets in the street she says: ‘Getting involved in the gay community – it’s not correct!’

Another spoke to the camera, with a screen in the background showing a giant aubergine emoji, and says: ‘Constantly going on about who wants to shag who shouldn’t be a fire service priority.’

‘It’s just bulls***!’ said another wearing a rainbow hat, while sat at a computer which read: ‘Very important document!’

The video reminds viewers that ‘LGBT+ people still face prejudice at home and at work’, and fire fighters insisted ‘we celebrate LGBT+ pride in solidarity with all those we serve and employ’.

In a final comical clip a man speaks in a deadpan voice to the camera saying: ‘I don’t see or understand why you feel the need to celebrate.’

He then blows a party horn with a straight face as two rainbow flags are waved in the background, before he is covered in confetti.

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The video then ends on a poignant reminder, saying: ‘Fires don’t discriminate and neither do we’.

The clip has received great praise across social media with thousands of likes and shares.

One wrote: ‘Why on earth would you get abuse? If my house was on fire and a firefighter came to the window, not sure I’d enquired if they were gay or not. Bonkers.’

Another said: ‘This is a brilliant video!!!! As an openly gay firefighter! I can not stress how great this video is’.

‘Well done for calling out direct LGBT+ abuse. Indifference can as damaging as ignorance – you demonstrate this really well,’ wrote another.