Monday, 14 March 2011

Another step along the way

Regular readers of this blog will know the importance we place on small victories towards the ultimate aim of LGBT acceptance in football.

So it is with pleasure that the following news reached us: a charter signed by national sporting bodies against homophobia and transphobia.

Among those signatures was Alex Horne, the general secretary of the FA.

In a statement, he said: "The FA and its stakeholders have worked hard over the years in providing football for all and ensuring that football stadia are open to everyone and are both family and LGB and T friendly.

"We’ve seen real progress over the last 20 years when it comes to tackling racism and that’s something football should be proud of.

"We remain committed to our long-term goal of removing all forms of discrimination, such as homophobia, out of the game."

Coming shortly after the FA announced its backing to the Justin Campaign's Football v Homophobia initiative, it is clear that those in the halls of power are sitting up and taking notice of the game's last taboo.

Praise must also be directed towards the coalition Government and in particular equalities minister Lynne Featherstone.

But quite what impact the charter has is another question.

Darren Ollerton, director of the Justin Campaign, said: "The Justin Campaign applaud this move by the FA to make public their commitment to tackling homophobia and transphobia in the UK game.

Whilst it is important for the FA to publicly assert their values around equality within football, the future worth in signing this charter will be seen in real change on and off the pitch.

"The Justin Campaign is clear that there must be real tangible outcomes to this move, and look forward to working closely with the FA to ensure that all points on the charter are fulfilled."

Show your support by signing the charter here.

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