Players encouraged to support inaugural Rainbow Round of Sport this weekend

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Australian rugby players and supporters are being encouraged to support the inaugural ‘Rainbow Round of Sport’ this weekend, in an effort to boot homophobia out of rugby.

Rugby players across Australia are encouraged to support the campaign by lacing up their boots with a pair of rainbow shoelaces as a symbol of their stance against homophobia.

It comes after the organisers of Sydney’s 2014 Bingham Cup (the Gay Rugby World Cup) and a coalition of LGBTI sports commissioned a global research project which found that 46% of participants believed that LGBTI participants are not accepted in sporting culture.

By wearing rainbow laces and promoting the initiative, players and rugby clubs can raise awareness about homophobia in sport and show their support for the LGBTI community in Australian Rugby.

The objective is to develop a safe and inclusive environment for players, administrators, coaches and spectators to participate and engage in sport regardless of their sexuality.

In 2014, Australian Rugby signed a landmark Inclusion Policy, designed to put an end to all forms of discrimination and homophobia in rugby and ensure a positive environment for everyone involved in the game, and today through their support behind the initiative.

“There is no place for homophobia or any form of discrimination in Rugby, and our actions and words, both on and off the field, must reflect this,” ARU CEO Bill Pulver said.

“Our Inclusion Policy signals our clear stance on homophobia in Rugby. We are committed to ensuring all Australians, regardless of their sexuality, gender or background are able to enjoy our great sport equally.

“The LGBTI Rugby players in Australia are fantastic role models for thousands of men and women across the world. We were delighted when teams from all over the world visited Sydney to compete in the 2014 Bingham Cup as it generated an ongoing national conversation about homophobia in sport.”

To pick up a free pair of Rainbow Laces visit your local Rebel Sport or Amart store.

For more information head to www.rainbowlaces.net