LGBT Denmark: Praise to Danish football for a new initiative against homophobia

This week a longer campaign against homophobia in Danish football are launched.

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The campaign is run in collaboration between football’s leading organisations – namely DBU, the Player Association (Spillerforeningen) and the Divisional Association (Divisionsforeningen). A united Danish football community stands against homophobia in Danish sports.

Søren Laursen, chairman of LBGT Denmark, welcomes the initiative: “In sports associations, all Danes meets in a community across the normal dividing lines we have in society. The sport holds a potential to let go of the ideas and prejudices we have about each other. Therefore, it is pleasing that the leading football organisations take the opportunity and run a campaign against homophobia. ”

Wider potential than a single sport

Football is the right place to enter because it is the widest and most popularly based sport in Denmark. When the signal is so strong from the biggest and most popular sport, it can be important beyond the own rows of the football.

“When the big organisations and the biggest stars of the sport goes ahead as an example, it’s a signal to the whole sporting community to follow suit. In LGBT Denmark, we hope that the campaign will have a noticeable effect throughout society – not only in football clubs, but also in other sports, “says Søren Laursen.

Certification for organisations and associations

LGBT Danmark launches the Emphatic Labor Market (Empatisk Arbejdsmarked) certification program in August 2017, which is an offer to all Danish associations, organisations, institutions and companies in both the private and public sectors. Almost half of all LGBT people hide their sexual identity and orientation when they are at work. It shows a survey that was made for Danish labour unions LO, FTF and Academics (Akademikerne) in August 2016.

“It is a natural extension of our efforts to also certify sports associations – big and small – thus ensuring an even more inclusive community in the world of sports,” says Peder Holk Svendsen, spokesman for LGBT Denmark in the labour market. “Sports organisations are obviously ready for it. LGBT Denmark would like to cooperate with them to develop a certification specifically for sports and associations.”

The project’s staff adds: “We must remember that the sports associations are actually concrete jobs with both volunteers and paid employees. Every 10th of them are either Gay, Lesbian, Bi- or Transperson, and this figure also applies to associations members. Crucial to everyone’s well-being and sporting development, the associations are dressed well to recruit a diverse staff that can meet their members without prejudice, as they are. “