Lincolnshire Football Association has been shortlisted for a Football v Homophobia award in the County FA category for a second year in a row, for our work to make football more inclusive for the LGBTQ+ community in the county.
The County FA Award recognises the important contribution English County FAs make to increasing LGBTQ+ inclusion, as well as addressing LGBTIQ+ phobia within our area. Having won the award in 2023, Lincolnshire FA have made the final 3 for the second year in a row - joining Norfolk FA and Staffordshire FA as 2024 finalists.
The Football v Homophobia campaign exists to challenge discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity and expression at all levels in football. As an international initiative, FvH engages in campaigning, education, advice and guidance, research, policy consultation and capacity building to:
- Make existing football structures safe, welcoming and inclusive for LGBTI people
- Create opportunities and promote engagement of LGBTI people in football at all levels and in all forms
- Improve the representation and visibility of LGBTI people throughout football
- To realise the potential of football in society as a tool to create positive change
We recently released statistics on this issue within our region, showing that:
1. There have been 23 reports in Lincolnshire so far this season of allegations around homophobic abuse.
2. There have been 14 more reports with allegations of homophobic abuse this season so far than the entirety of last season.
3. 13% of investigations this season have been into allegations of comments made which references a protected characteristic.
The nomination recognises the extensive efforts we as a County FA are putting in across the organisation and the area; ranging from our Inclusion Advisory Group (IAG), our LGBTQ+ Club Accreditation Programme, LGBTQ+ Inclusion Workshops, the newly formed LGBTQ+ Inclusive Recreational Sessions (now taken on by Lincoln United), as well as the positive way our discipline team deal with cases of discrimination.
Lincolnshire FA CEO, Nick Hanson, says: “We feel honoured that the County FA has once again been nominated for this award. We are committed to creating safe and inclusive football environments, and it's very humbling to see we and our fantastic clubs have once again been recognised in this area. Our work in this space has continued to gather pace over the last 12 months, which has seen the launch of Lincolnshire's first ever LGBTQ+ Football Session and the successful running of our Football v Homophobia event - due to return this February. We are both grateful and thankful to the members of our Inclusion Advisory Group for their role in leading our work in this important area”.
As part of the Football v Homophobia month of action, Lincolnshire FA will be hosting a 6-a-side festival and Q&A panel discussion at Lincoln City’s LNER Stadium on Sunday 11th February. To find out more about this, click here.
Lincolnshire FA will also be hosting two LGBTQ+ Workshops during February's Football v Homophobia Month, supporting clubs and organisations on how they can make their settings more LGBTQ+ inclusive and ensure that football is truly for all. To find out more about the workshops, click here.
The winners of the award will be announced on Friday 23rd February 2024 at the National Football Museum in Manchester.
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