ARGYLE are showing their support for the Football v Homophobia campaign at today's game.
Football v Homophobia takes place every year in February. It is an international campaign to tackle homophobia and prejudice against LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender) people in football.
The aim of FvH is to make football safe and welcoming for everyone. Prejudice and discrimination in football affects us all, not just LGBT people. Justin Fashanu, the first ever out gay male professional footballer, suffered homophobic bullying and hostility after his sexual orientation became public, but so, too, did heterosexual footballers such as Graeme Le Saux and Sol Campbell.
In recent years, professional footballers Robbie Rogers and Thomas Hitzlsperger publicly announced that they were gay. Both of these players have talked about the challenges of being gay men within professional football, and the impact that anti-gay jokes and language can have on confidence and self-esteem.
Casey Stoney, the former England Women’s captain, has also spoken out about her sexuality. Whilst she felt accepted within football circles, she has also spoken of her fears of stereotypes and of being judged by the ‘outside world’ for being gay.
Throughout Football v Homophobia month and beyond, please help Argyle by standing up to prejudice and discrimination against LGBT people in the game. Together, we can make football a welcoming place for everyone.
If you witness any behaviour during a game, like anti-gay chanting and hateful or prejudiced language, speak to a nearby steward, the police, a club official or contact Kick It Out via the reporting line – 0800 169 9414 – or the Kick It Out app www.kickitout.org. Remember, doing nothing only allows discrimination to get worse!