FORGE UNITES WITH STONEWALL TO MAKE SPORT EVERYONE’S GAME

Students at Forge have teamed up with leading lesbian, gay, bi and trans equality charity, Stonewall, to show support for lesbian, gay, bi and trans people in sport.

Students in year 8 wore Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces whilst doing PE lessons to show that they accept everyone without exception and that homophobic, biphobic and transphobic abuse is not tolerated, on or off the pitch.

Stonewall has developed a range of measures to tackle homophobic, biphobic and transphobic abuse as part of its Rainbow Laces campaign. These include a training programme for sports coaches who with young people so they can ensure they are making sport inclusive. The charity has also developed a sports toolkit for grassroots and community sport to help build awareness and understanding of the issues affecting LGBT people.

Hundreds of schools and clubs have signed up to join in with a week of action to show that we can all play a part in making sport everyone’s game.

Robbie de Santos, Head of Campaigns at Stonewall, said: “Unfortunately there are still people who think that anti-LGBT abuse is acceptable, particularly in sport. We are working with sports clubs at all levels to show that supporting diversity, in all its form, is the easiest way to build a more supportive and high-performing team and a strong, loyal following. The good news is that anyone involved in sport can be part of creating a more welcoming environment for LGBT people.

Andrew Burns, Principal at Forge, said: “We know sport has the power to unite communities across Britain. As a school at the heart of our community, we are used to involving and supporting a wide variety of people with different needs. We believe that it doesn’t matter who you are, everyone should be able to play sport, so signing up to the Rainbow Laces Campaign was a natural step for us. It is a fun, easy and instant way to demonstrate that we are fully inclusive and that our students can be true to themselves when they are with us.

He added: “This is a definitely something we’ll look to expand throughout the entire academy next year. We’re committed to Stonewall and everything they stand for and I was very proud of my students today who showed support and solidarity for lesbian, gay, bi and trans people.

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