British Athletics are proud to support Stonewall to help continue promoting equality in the sport. The campaign launches this weekend by supporting Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces campaign throughout the SPAR British Athletics Indoor Championships in Birmingham.
Athletes, along with staff and colleagues of British Athletics will support the campaign through a variety of ways; celebrating the diversity and commitment of the sport to inclusivity, whatever sexual orientation, gender, disability or race.
Over the course of the weekend, the Rainbow Laces campaign will be reflected in the British Athletics’ #REPRESENT brand, most notably on the athlete’s bibs, whilst Rainbow Laces will be handed out to British Athletics staff and volunteers to wear. This project will run alongside a number of other activities planned to raise awareness of the campaign in support of lesbian, gay, bi and trans people in sport.
The digital platforms at British Athletics will also undergo a rainbow makeover with a specially designed logo for use of digital platforms.
Support of the campaign is being embraced by the organisation to recognise athletics is a sport for everyone and there should be no barriers to participation.
UK Athletics Chief Executive Niels de Vos commented:
“I am delighted that UK Athletics is supporting Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces campaign at the SPAR British Athletics Indoor Championships and throughout our competing British teams.
“Athletics prides itself on being the most diverse of all sports, so I hope our backing of this campaign will be seen as a signal, not just to athletes but also to all young people starting out in the sport that UKA supports and encourages all those who compete in athletics regardless of sexual orientation, race, gender or disability.”
Performance Director Neil Black added:
“We are committed to supporting the Rainbow Laces campaign across all teams, on both the Olympic and Paralympic programmes. We are looking forward to kicking things off this weekend in Birmingham and then continuing to show our support throughout the year.”
British record holder over a number of race walk distances, Tom Bosworth added:
“As an openly gay athlete, I’m pleased to see British Athletics committing support to the Rainbow Laces campaign as well as continuing to celebrate the diversity of our support.
“This is another clear message that athletics – either as an elite athlete, club runner or fan – is for everyone. I hope this will inspire people to get involved in the sport and most importantly, create a better environment for success.”
Robbie de Santos, Head of Campaigns at Stonewall, said:
“It’s great to see British Athletics lacing up and showing their support for LGBT equality. Stonewall works with a huge range of sports at all levels to show that celebrating diversity, in all its forms, is the easiest way to build a more supportive and high-performing team and a strong, loyal following.
“While wearing Rainbow Laces is a small act, it means a lot to LGBT people, giving a clear indication that they are not only welcome in athletics, but celebrated.
“The message this campaign sends is that anyone involved in athletics can be part of creating a more welcoming environment for LGBT people.”