A new logo to kick homophobia and transphobia out of sport was unveiled by the Home Office.
The winning logo was selected following a nationwide competition and designed by 10-year-old Anjune Ahmed from Hungerford primary school, Islington. Her design features a gold medal with a rainbow ribbon. Anjune beat 70 others to the prize in a competition hosted on facebook and judged by rugby union star and sports charter champion Ben Cohen.
The sports charter was launched in March 2011 and commits signatories to work to rid sport of discrimination and abuse against LGB&T people. It has received remarkable support from the sporting world receiving over 3,300 signatures, including from all premier league, championship, league 1 and league 2 football clubs and all rugby football league super league teams.
Equalities minister Lynne Featherstone said:
‘Since its launch a year ago the sports charter has received tremendous support from the sporting world. Over 3,300 individuals and clubs have signed up including many of the top teams in the country, and all have promised to challenge discrimination and abuse wherever it occurs.
‘Signing is of course the first step of a much longer journey and so I now want to see all those signatories turning their commitment into concrete action. I also want to see even more sports fans, clubs and players pledging their support.
‘The new logo launched today will help everyone who loves sport spread the message that homophobic and transphobic abuse and discrimination is never acceptable.’
Rugby union star Ben Cohen helped to shortlist the top six designs which were then put to a public vote on his website and facebook.
England rugby world cup champion Ben Cohen MBE said:
‘I am passionate about standing up against homophobia and making sure sport is a welcoming place for everyone. The winning logo will allow sports fans, players and clubs to clearly show their support for tackling this issue and help unite everyone who loves sport behind this important campaign.’
Hungerford school headteacher Brian Bench said:
‘We choose to participate in events such as this because Hungerford is an inclusive school. As such these awards recognise our commitment to equality.
‘Pupils, staff and families at Hungerford are dedicated to celebrating diversity and making sure that every person feels safe, free from any form of bullying and happy within our community.’
The inspiration for the winning design came when Suran Dickson, a gay games triple gold medallist and founder of anti-bullying charity diversity role models, visited Anjune’s school and spoke about how important it was for everyone, no matter who they are, to be able to go for gold.
All the children from years five and six (ages nine to 11) at Hungerford primary school took part in the competition. Two other pupils from the school received the second and fourth prizes. The remaining runners up were from Nottingham and Reading.
The winner and runners up received prizes donated by the football association, the football league, the lawn tennis association, the rugby football league and Ben Cohen including:
- A mascot package for under 11s at an England football international game at Wembley;
- A tour of Wembley stadium;
- Two tickets to the championship play-off finals at Wembley;
- Two tickets to the AEGON tennis championship at queens;
- Four tickets to the rugby league challenge cup final;
- A signed Ben Cohen rugby shirt.
Anjune received first choice of all the prizes and chose a tour of Wembley stadium.
The new logo will be used on all campaign materials. Sports clubs, fans and players across the country will be encouraged to use the logo to mark their support through a twibbons campaign launching today on facebook and twitter.
Notes to editors
1. The sports charter twibbons campaign will encourage facebook and twitter users to ‘pin’ the new logo to their profile pictures. To get involved go to: http://twb.ly/GPKxaF
2. For photos visit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/49956354@N04/sets/72157629276614248/
3. The charter forms part of wider government work to ensure equal treatment for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people which sees action being taken on a range of issues including equal civil marriage, promoting better recording of hate crimes and tackling homophobic and transphobic bullying in schools.
4. The governing bodies for some of the most popular UK sports were founding signatories of the charter, including the football association, the rugby football league, the rugby football union, the lawn tennis association and the England and Wales cricket board. The London organising committee for the olympic and paralympic games (LOCOG) was also a founding signatory.
5. The rugby football league and the professional footballers association in particular have been leading the way, recently launching their own programmes to increase awareness of homophobia and other forms of prejudice in sport and help staff and fans tackle it.
6. Anyone can back the campaign on facebook by ‘liking’ the ‘I love sport, but I hate homophobia and transphobia’ facebook page or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.