Premiership Rugby and title partner Gallagher are proud to announce the continuation of their support for Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces campaign as the charity gears up for its 2021 programme of activity.
The campaign aims to promote equality and inclusivity within sport for LGBTQ+ people and tackle discrimination on every level to help make sport everyone’s game. Both Premiership Rugby and Gallagher are proud to be involved in the campaign and show that everyone is welcome at all levels of the game, no matter their background.
Throughout Round Nine of the Gallagher Premiership (26-28 November), Premiership Rugby and Gallagher will demonstrate their solidarity and support through the extensive use of special 'rainbow' branding in stadiums, while match officials will once more wear and use specially commissioned rainbow shirts and flags.
While Leicester Tigers won't be in action this weekend due to a BYE fixture, the club continues to show it's support for the campaign.
Gallagher colleagues from across the UK will also help raise awareness by handing out rainbow laces to thousands of fans at each of the six matches over the weekend, highlighting the aims of the campaign and the importance of making rugby an inclusive and empowering sport for all.
All Gallagher Premiership Rugby teams will be sent Rainbow Laces to wear in their matches, and all supporters and partners are invited to get involved by purchasing and wearing their Rainbow Laces to show support too.
The weekend is part of Premiership Rugby’s long-standing commitment to inclusion within the game. Wayne Morris the Community and CSR Director at Premiership Rugby said: "We’re proud once again to support Stonewall’s campaign alongside Gallagher and to be allies to all the LGBTQ+ people involved in rugby.
"We strive hard every day to make our sport welcoming to all - we want rugby to be everyone’s game and we are prepared to play our part to make this happen.
“Many LGBTQ+ people feel they have to choose between loving and being involved in sport and being their true selves. No one should feel that they are unable to participate in any way or hold back who they are.
“Stonewell has explained that more than 40% of LGTQ+ people have experienced or witnessed prejudice in sport, with a shocking 82% claiming to feel unsafe or welcome in sport. This has to change.”
As in previous years, Premiership Rugby and Gallagher are calling on fans, players, and the rugby community across the country to get involved and show their support by buying their own laces and wearing them with pride across the weekend.
But they are also encouraging people to go one step further, as Morris explains: “Wear your laces as a pledge of commitment to speak up and stand up for things that matter. Only by talking more openly about the issues and what is and isn’t acceptable in sport can we make a real difference and ensure that rugby is everyone’s game.”
Sarah Griffiths, Director of Communications at Gallagher added: “This is our fourth year of partnering with Premiership Rugby to support the important work of Stonewall. We need to celebrate inclusivity and diversity in all aspects of life, and this extends to sport. The community people find in sport is so important and everyone should be able to benefit from it.
"Only through collective strength and power will we put an end to discrimination so that everyone feels welcome and can be themselves always.”