New research from Stonewall has identified that more than half of the British public want to help LGBTQ+ people feel included in the sport.
58 per cent of Brits believe it’s important that anti-LGBT language, such as calling someone or something ‘gay’ in a derogatory way, is challenged at live sporting events. A further 53 per cent agreed that everyone has a responsibility to call out anti-LGBT abuse.
Despite this, only a quarter of people (25 per cent) said they would feel confident enough intervening when they hear this abuse.
These statistics highlight that attitudes in sporting are shifting and people want to do more to create change. Stonewall is now challenging fans and athletes to be ‘active allies’ and take action to support LGBTQ+ people in sport.
The research also found the British public want to see LGBTQ+ inclusion at all levels of sport. Nearly two-thirds (63 per cent) said local sports clubs should be welcoming of lesbian, gay, bi and trans people.
The research comes as thousands of fans and athletes are lacing up this month for LGBT equality in sport as part of Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces campaign. From football and rugby to judo and darts, sports across Britain are coming together to make sport everyone’s game.
Kirsty Clarke, Stonewall’s Director of Sport, said:
Sport is one of our strongest tools for social change, which is why it’s so powerful to see so many people wanting to do more to support LGBT people and challenge anti-LGBT abuse in sport.
“This year we want our Rainbow Laces campaign to give people confidence to show their visible support for lesbian, gay, bi and trans people, either on or off the pitch. Our research shows what a huge appetite there is among people to kick discrimination out of sports at all levels.”
Clarke added “we want more players, fans, clubs and organisations to join in and understand how they can play a part in changing attitudes and standing up for LGBT equality. Our work won’t be finished until every lesbian, gay, bi and trans person, from fans to players, are accepted without exception.”
Rainbow Laces will be running until Friday 7 December. More information can be found here.