Rainbow Laces in boots

The Results of Norfolk FA's LGBT Survey

During the Rainbow Laces Campaign we asked the #NorfolkFootball community to participate in our LGBT survey.

During the Rainbow Laces Campaign we asked the Norfolk Football community to participate in our LGBT survey. The survey was undertaken to try to better understand the issues facing football in Norfolk and to provide us with a better understanding of keys areas where our work can be focused to be able to provide better support to the LGBT community within football.

The survey had respondents from all roles within the game including, players, coaches/managers, referees, club officials/volunteers and fans. The highest percentage of respondents came from players (29%), closely following by referees (28%).

32% of respondents reported that they had heard homophobic language in the last year whilst playing, coaching, watching or officiating football. The highest percentage of homophobic language was reported to be heard by players (49%) followed by fans (35%). The lowest percentage of homophobic language was reported by volunteers (12%) and coaches (14%). Of those respondents who reported hearing discrimination, 52% were aware of how to report discrimination in Norfolk Football.

Overall, 42% of respondents were aware of how to report discrimination, 7% where not aware and 32% were not aware, however they knew where to look or who to ask to find out. All of the referees that responded to the survey were aware of how to report discrimination.

When asked whether respondents believed that individuals involved in football would feel comfortable to come out amongst the football community 46% believed they would. 20% believed that they would not feel comfortable and 37% were unsure. Those that were unsure were asked why this was. The majority of responses detailed a lack of acceptance from some individuals, a lack of role models and a culture that is changing for the positive, but slowly.

Respondents were asked to rate on a scale of 0-100 whether they believed Norfolk FA were doing enough to tackle homophobia (0=No 100=Yes). The average score given was 64 which identifies that the Norfolk Football community believes we could be doing more to support our LGBT community. 81% of respondents believed that the Rainbow Laces Campaign will help to promote LGBT inclusion in Norfolk.

When respondents were asked to rate on a scale of 1-5 what they believed was the most important factors at improving LGBT inclusion they rated LGBT inclusive clubs as the most important factor as demonstrated in the graph below.

LGBT Survey Results Table

When asked what further actions could be taken by Norfolk FA to help promote LGBT inclusion and/or address LGBT discrimination in football 31% were unsure as to what more could be completed. The majority of comments detailed continuing to promote inclusive practices, holding one-off events, harsher punishments for those found to be discriminating based on sexual orientation, better education and ensuring when discrimination occurs it is reported promptly and correctly.

The conclusions that can be drawn from the results of this survey are that more work needs to completed surrounding the education of the football community not only in general attitudes towards the LGBT community but also understanding and reporting discrimination. It is also demonstrates that the key piece of work that the football community believes would promote LGBT inclusion in Norfolk is to establish LGBT inclusive clubs.

Reporting discrimination in football is essential in providing us with the information to tackle the problem. More information on how you can report discrimination in Norfolk football can be found by clicking here.

Norfolk County FA have developed a frame work whereby clubs can apply to become an LGBT inclusive club. This frame work details steps that must be taken to become an officially accredited Norfolk FA LGBT inclusive club which provides some real action behind being named an inclusive club. For more information on how your club can apply to be an LGBT inclusive club, please contact Senior Football Development Officer, Rachel Cossey via Rachel.Cossey@NorfolkFA.com.