This year’s CHANNEL Islands Pride celebrations will see ‘Pride in Sport’ launching for the first time in the islands. Local sports teams, personalities and sporting events will be joining together to help tackle the problem of homophobia, biphobia and transphobia in sport, showing support for LGBTQ+ equality and diversity by wearing rainbow laces and rainbow sweatbands.
Sponsored by EY and supported by the Sports Commission, the event intends to raise awareness and understanding of homophobia and practices which discriminate against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning people in sport.
Andrew Dann, EY’s Channel Islands Managing Partner, said “At EY, we are proud to be playing our part in this year’s CI Pride by supporting as the Pride in Sport sponsor. We encourage everyone involved in any sporting activities during the week to show their support for LGBTQ+ equality and diversity by wearing the rainbow laces and sharing photos on social media.
There are still regular reports of homophobia, biphobia and transphobia in sports and business. It is our hope that campaigns such as this will help to tackle these issues and raise awareness of the struggles the LGBTQ+ community face. Ultimately creating an inclusive environment where everyone can focus on achieving their full potential without fear of judgement or persecution.”
Channel Islands Pride will be held for the second time in Guernsey on the 8th of September. The first Pride in Guernsey two years ago saw over 2,500 people celebrating diversity and inclusion. Liberate, the local LGBTQ+ charity who host the event, are hoping that 2018 will be just as successful. The theme this year is #StrongerTogether and Liberate are looking forward to welcoming people from every sexuality and gender identity for a day filled with music, colour and fun for all ages.
Vice Chair Ellie Jones added “Our sports personalities are role models for a lot of people. Having the island sports teams and events ‘come out’ in a visible show of support for Pride sends a strong message of inclusion to and for everyone. We still live in a world where there isn’t one openly gay professional footballer, due to the perceived homophobia in sport. It’s hard to explain to people how much events like Pride in Sport can help people become more comfortable in being themselves in all areas of their lives. For an LGBTQ+ person, knowing that if they come out, that they will be supported by their team and their supporters, has an immeasurable impact on someone’s mental health and wellbeing”.
Alun Williams, coordinator of the Be Active Forum, The Daily Mile in Guernsey, and a prominent local sportsman and coach commented “Guernsey loves sport and activity and the community has a great tradition of encouraging sport for all sectors of the community. In the days surrounding Pride we have a packed calendar including Guernsey Rugby club in their first home match of the season, the Island Games qualifying Triathlon race, the golf inter insular (in Jersey), the final Intertrust Track and Field Challenge, the MIND 10k race, sand racing at Vazon, a full FNB Priaulx football programme and various events with Try-a-Tri.
We’d love to see anyone involved in sport over the weekend to show their support of such a worthwhile cause by wearing Rainbow laces.”
If your sports team or event would like to join Pride in Sport please get in touch with Liberate via firstname.lastname@example.org.