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NGBs encouraged to tackle homophobic abuse in sport by engaging with children early

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National governing bodies (NGB) must broaden their reach to schools in order to tackle homophobia in sport, according to MPs.

A report published by the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee titled Homophobia in Sport recommended that NGBs engage with younger children to educate them about LGBT matters.

It is feared that a number of LGBT students participate in sport less regularly, which may have a negative effect on their “mental and physical health and wellbeing”.

“In the long-term, it is very likely that a number of sports have been robbed of talent by the fact that promising young players have not felt accepted or supported in the sport they play,” the report went on to state.

“It appears that young players and athletes sometimes feel that they have to make the active choice between either coming out or continuing to participate in their chosen sport.”

Governing bodies are also being encouraged to create “toolkits” for grassroots clubs, with guidance for organisers and coaches.

The report recommends that they partner with Stonewall – the LGBT equality foundation – to produce “targeted, sensitive and common sense advice”.

“As the largest and wealthiest governing body, the FA should take the lead on the implementation of further training programmes,” said the report.

NGBs should also “commit more funds and resources” to “supporting further and more visible interventions” against homophobic abuse.

To read the full report, with all its recommendations, click here.

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National governing bodies (NGB) must broaden their reach to schools in order to tackle homophobia in sport, according to MPs.
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The report demonstrated the concern that young LGBT people were put off participating in sport / maRRitch/Shutterstock.com
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