Sport Allies today provided written evidence to a Commons Select Committee investigating homophobia in sport. A previous inquiry into racism in football (soccer) had concluded that homophobia was emerging as a bigger problem than other forms of discrimination in sport, and this inquiry has been launched in response.
The committee has expressed particular interest in:
- Looking at the experiences of gay sportsmen and sportswomen; what do these tell us about different sports and the progression of attitudes in general?
- The approach of governance bodies throughout sport; how does homophobic abuse compare to other forms of harassment? How successful have governing bodies been in tackling this issue?
- How is homophobia being tackled at school? What actions are taken by teachers and coaches involved in youth and amateur sport to ensure homophobia is challenged at any early stage?
- Does football have a particular problem with homophobia in comparison to other sports?
- Is homophobic abuse more of an issue in traditionally “masculine” sports? And looking specifically at the experience of women who play sport: is there more acceptance in the female game or is homophobia just as prevalent amongst women?
- What effect has the advent of social media had on discrimination in sport, in general?
Sport Allies’ submission has focused primarily on homophobia and the role of masculinity in excluding young people from sport in schools and other youth settings.
The Sport Allies submission can be downloaded at the link below.