Nearly 3000 people were surveyed and here is what they had to say…

BY NIC CROSARA, IMAGE BY RF_STUDIO/PEXELS

To mark its 30th anniversary (8 August) the anti-discrimination organisation Kick It Out published its The Impact Report. Nearly 3,000 football fans were surveyed and shared their experiences of and opinions on discrimination, diversity and inclusion.

The report finds that a majority of fans feel there is less discrimination in football now than when the organisation launched in 1993. On top of this 73% of respondents believe the sport has become more inclusive.

The research also showed that 69% of the fans who had previously experienced discrimination now experience less than they used to, due to the work of Kick It Out. And in more good news, 70% of respondents said they would feel comfortable calling out a friend for discrimination, however less (34%) were comfortable confronting a stranger.

While a lot of progress has clearly been made in the last 30 years, 85% of the fans surveyed shared that more needs to be done to combat discrimination towards fans at stadiums and 87% also stated more needs to be done to tackle abuse towards players at stadiums.

The report findings come two months after the organisation revealed that it had received a shocking record 1,007 reports of discriminatory behaviour across the professional game, grassroots clubs and social media during 2022/23’s football season – which represented a whopping 65.1% rise from the previous season. Racism remained the most prevalent form of discrimination and abuse both in professional and grassroots football and accounted for just under half of all reports made to the organisation during the 2022/23 season.

While it’s great to see more diversity and inclusion within the sport, more clearly needs to be done.

You can read the full report here: kickitout.org.

@niccrosara

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