The Premier League and all 20 clubs will be celebrating Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces campaign over the next two match rounds, demonstrating their ongoing commitment to supporting LGBTQ+ inclusion and making it clear that football is for everyone.
All Premier League matches taking place between 27 November and 2 December will be dedicated to Rainbow Laces. Clubs will show their support through a variety of matchday activities, with branding visible at every stadium. Rainbow-themed captain’s armbands, laces and pin badges have also been provided.
This year’s Rainbow Laces campaign encourages people to speak up on behalf of the LGBTQ+ community. The League and clubs are using their reach and appeal to help people engage in meaningful conversation and show the importance of allyship. Clubs are also producing a range of content featuring discussion between men’s and women’s players, as well as members of LGBTQ+ supporter groups.
Richard Masters, Premier League Chief Executive, said: “Football has a remarkable power to bring people together and it is a priority for the Premier League and our clubs to ensure everybody feels welcome and supported, from players and fans, to staff and all those involved in our many community programmes.
“We and our clubs play an important role in encouraging people to support the LGBTQ+ community. During the Rainbow Laces campaign, we showcase the wide variety of projects and initiatives being conducted all year round to highlight that equality and inclusion are central to everything we do.
“We will continue to ensure that every single Premier League environment is inclusive to all, as well as reinforcing there is no place for discrimination of any kind, wherever it takes place, with those found guilty facing permanent League-wide bans.”
The Premier League works together with all its clubs to celebrate and promote LGBTQ+ inclusion on an ongoing basis. This is underpinned by significant work across all areas of its business to improve policies and practices, including reporting measures and pastoral care, along with staff training, player care across all age groups and education programmes for young people.
Clubs work hard to create an inclusive environment, from the atmosphere and experience at their stadiums to the projects they run in their communities.
As this year’s Rainbow Laces campaign gets underway, the Premier League will launch new education resources for primary and secondary school children. These resources, supported by Stonewall, aim to empower young people to tackle bullying and offensive language. The secondary resources focus on building the confidence and knowledge of young people aged 11 and over on introductory LGBTQ+ topics, exploring what it means to be an active ally to LGBTQ+ people.
More than 18,000 primary schools in England and Wales will have access to the teaching materials that have been developed to help pupils challenge gender stereotypes as well as introducing the topic of allyship. Teachers can access the resources free of charge at plprimarystars.com.
The Premier League has partnered with Stonewall since 2017 and, along with our clubs, has developed a wide range of programmes and initiatives to set the benchmark for LGBTQ+ inclusivity in sport.