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St Kilda awarded highest overall ranking for the Pride in Sport index

The 2018 Australian Pride in Sport awards St Kilda football club the highest overall ranking for the Pride in Sport index.

The Australian Human Rights Commission, Australian Sports Commission and Bingham Cup introduce the concept in 2014 to address issues of homophobia and transphobia within Australian sport.

The NRL was recognised as the highest-ranked national sporting organisation, and Cricket Victoria the highest-ranked state sporting organisation.

Other individuals who received awards were:

  • Emma Staples from Cricket Australia (LGBTI ally award)
  • Reid Smith of the Perth Pythons (LGBTI inclusive coach)
  • Perth Pythons Hockey Club (LGBTI community sport) 
  • Jeremy Archer from the Brisbane Tritons Water Polo club (LGBTI out role model)

The co-founder of the Pride in Sport index, Andrew Purchas, said it was important to “acknowledge and celebrate those who have scored highly on the index”.

“These awards and the index continue this important work as they provide sporting organisations with an opportunity to reflect on their work in the inclusion of LGBTI participants and staff, and identify areas they can address to ensure their sport is truly inclusive,” he said.

“Many of Australia’s sporting organisations are recognising positive steps need to be taken to ensure your sexuality, gender identity or intersex status does not impact your ability to play, watch or be involved with sport at any level – and we’re proud to celebrate those success stories at the Pride in Sport awards.”

Cricketer Alex Blackwell, who was recently appointed to the board of Cricket NSW, is a co-patron of Pride in Sport, said sport plays an important role in making people feel welcome and included which will help LGBTI people’s health and wellbeing.

“Sport has had an incredibly positive impact on my life during my 15-year international cricket career,” she said.

“I have experienced all the health and social benefits that come with playing sport at the highest level.

“Sadly the evidence tells us that sport is not a particularly welcoming place for all Australians, especially young LGBTI people. This is arguably the group that could most benefit from sport.

“Now, armed with this knowledge, sporting organisations are joining Pride in Sport so that they can effectively break down the barriers to LGBTI inclusion and attract the largest and most diverse participation, fan and talent base and ensure their sport thrives into the future.”