Australian sporting codes unite against homophobia07 April 2014

RepresentativesofAustralia’smajorsportcodes, includingtheAustralianRugbyUnion(ARU),theAustralianFootballLeague(AFL),theFootballFederationAustralia(FFA)andCricketAustralia, willcometogethernext Wednesday(9April),inSydney,  tocollectivelycommittotacklingdiscriminationbasedonsexualorientation.

The meeting is being organised by officials of the Bingham Cup, commonly known as the Gay Rugby World Cup, and will also be attended by past and present high profile sport professionals, who support the initiative, including the cricket player Nathan Lyon, the former footballer Sarah Walsh and the rugby league player Greg Inglis.

“They are signing a document and a commitment that their sports will implement anti-homophobia and inclusion policies by the time the Bingham Cup starts (in Sydney) in August of this year.” said Bingham Cup chairman Andrew Purchas.

“It sends a very important message to the sports, to their supporters and their administrators that there’s no room for any homophobia in sport,” he added.

On the day, several other athletes will appear in a supporting anti-homophobia TV community service announcement, including the Italian football player of Sydney FC Alessandro Del Piero, the rugby union player David Pocock, the Olympic swimming champion Libby Trickett and the Australian netball representative Kimberlee Green.

Bingham Cup organisers initially approached the ARU last year and then challenged the other football codes to be inclusive and take an anti-homophobic stance.

“Our main focus was saying ‘let’s raise this issue above inter-code rivalry,” explained Andrew Purchas.

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