U.K. Sporting Bodies Sign Gay Charter

Gay rights campaigners have welcomed a new charter that aims to stamp out homophobia and transphobia within U.K. sports. The Charter for Action was signed this week by major sporting bodies including The Football Association, the England and Wales Cricket Board, the Rugby Football League and the Rugby Football Union.

They join the Lawn Tennis Association and the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) in being the first major sports to sign up to the initiative. Equalities minister Lynne Featherstone has urged more associations, groups and individuals to add their signatures.

“Sport should be about what you can do, not who you are. But too many lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people feel that the sports field is not somewhere they can be themselves, and that prejudice and discrimination will mean their sexuality is always talked about more than their ability with a ball, bat or racket…” she said.

“Homophobia and transphobia has no place in sport and I’m delighted that so many sporting bodies are backing our campaign to stamp it out at all levels, from local parks to Olympic stadiums.”

Published this week, the charter is one part of a new action plan that sets out the government’s initiatives for supporting LGBT equality in the coming year.

Alex Horne, General Secretary of the Football Association, 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 LGTB 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.”

We are all massive sports fans here in the gay chat team and have an appreciation for football, rugby, tennis etc that goes far beyond sitting on the sidelines! We’ve shown our support for the charter by visiting and liking the Charter for Action Facebook page. Why not sign up too and join us in supporting our out sports men and women? Game on!

Gary Cosby

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