February 2016 marks LGBT History Month, which is an annual celebration and recognition of the advancement of LGBT equality both currently and historically. In conjuction with the LGBTQA, the Sports Executive launched their LGBTQ+ Inclusivity in Sport phase of the #BeTheInfluenceCampaign. At the core of sport values is the duty to create an inclusive and welcoming atmosphere for all individuals. Team Leicester sports clubs attended a forum event organised by the Sports Executive, where a panel comprising on LGBTQ+ students shared their personal experiences in university sport, and offered suggestions and advice for teams to implement within their own clubs.
Our panelists (left to right). Spanny, Omar, David, Cate and Zach
All of the panelists had varied experiences of university sport, from wholly positive and discrimination free, to unforuntately negative, not necessarily stemming from the club culture, but from stringent rules constraining these clubs. One of the issues was a lack of knowledge within committees regarding things such as trans-elibility to play and train, and how exactly clubs can not only show that they are inclusive, but actually be inclusive. In light of this, we drafted our LGBTQ+ Sport pledge, and appointed a liaison officer within the Association to bridge the communication between Sports clubs and the LGBTQA. This individual will undergo the necessary safeguarding training, and work closely with next years full-time Sports Officer!
The Association have also produced a information booklet that will form part of committee training next year; copies were produced and circulated at the event, and are also vailable for general access. To take a look at the booklet, please just follow the link below!
In addition to our forum event, this years Varsity season is Pride themed; another opportunity for our clubs to demonstrate their inclusiveness. Many clubs will be sporting rainbow laces at their events, and collecting for Stonewall Charty, an oganisation that empowers and supports LGBTQ+ individuals. There are various other things going on, such as a Pride March, and sports evenings.
If you have any questions about the campaign, or any suggestions, or would like to get involved in any way, please get in touch with email@example.com; the Sports President for the 15/16 academic year and look out for the #winwithpride hashtag on Instagram and Twitter