Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces Campaign has brought visibility for LGBTQ+ people within sport, raising awareness of their experiences both on and off the pitch. The campaign took place between the 19th-31st October, with the 26th specifically being ‘Rainbow Laces Day’, but inclusivity has no off season, and is something we should be constantly working towards.
Something that needs addressing is the fact that less than fifty percent of sports fans think competitive sports are welcoming and safe for LGBTQ+ fans and players.
As such, programmes including Premier League Primary Stars will now be facilitating the means for teachers to hold discussions on why inclusion is important, running workshops that allow pupils the chance to design their own rainbow themed football boot, alongside a message of support for the LGBTQ+ community.
Burnley FC in the Community and the club are very passionate about the Rainbow Laces Project, are eager to show support for the LGBTQ+ community, and aim to encourage diversity amongst players, fans and participants alike. Burnley has such a rich history of LGBTQ+ that it’s only fitting that the football club and community, an integral part of this town, should be helping to pave the way forward for equality and diversity within the community!
Of course, Burnley Football Club are not the only ones within the local area striving towards this goal. Blaze, a youth-led arts charity, runs a project called ‘Stand Out’, stationed right here in Burnley. The Young Producers who work on this project are working to understand the direction we should take in the future, by delving into and researching the rich heritage of Burnley, with efforts having culminated into an exhibition that launched back in July and is now touring around libraries in East Lancashire.
The exhibition features oral histories and the first volume of our own Zine (self published magazine) – the second volume scheduled to release later this year in December.
At Stand Out!, we are incredibly supportive of the Rainbow Laces campaign. It is a hope that with the support from Burnley FC and BFCitC, efforts will encourage people to go out and learn more for themselves about the LGBTQ+ community and their presence within Burnley.
For anyone who wants to learn more, visit the Blaze Arts website where you can find out more about the Stand Out! project, the work we do and the resources we provide!
Written by Stand Out Young Producer, Blake
Stand Out Zine front cover, copies available at Burnley Library