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Football v Homophobia

28 February 2014

Lions support international initiative

This Saturday Millwall entertain Brighton & Hove Albion in the Sky Bet Champoinship at The Den, with both clubs taking the opportunity to support the Football v. Homophobia campaign.

FvH is an international initiative opposing homophobia in football. Endorsed by the FA, its goal is to tackle homophobia and prejudice against lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender people in grassroots football.

Mikey Collins, secretary and trustee of Millwall for All says: "The fact that 50 professional clubs are now backing the initiative is raising the campaign's profile and I'm proud that once again Millwall are taking a lead. We do need to get the message across to fans that homphobic language in a football stadium has no more place than racist language."

Millwall skipper Danny Shittu adds: "As a club we have been at the forefront of fighting other kinds of discrimination and I'm pleased that we are able to play a part in the campaign against homophobia."

Many in football are acutely aware that there is a need for change in attitudes in order that gay people are able to come out without fear of ridicule and retribution.

However, as Millwall Lionesses striker Emma Whitter explains, things have started to change for the better within the women's game:

"It's not easy to come out, but the backing of the rest of the football community can be a big help. With England captain, Casey Stoney, coming out and receiving great support from many people in women's football, it has opened the door for others to follow."

Millwall defender Shane Lowry believes that football at large should follow that lead. He explains: "In other sports, the likes of Gareth Thomas and Tom Daley have received widespread support having come out and I think the taboos are being broken down. Ex-footballers Robbie Rogers and Thomas Hitzlsperger have done likewise, and I would hope and expect that when a current player chooses to follow suit, team-mates and fans alike will rally round to support him." 

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