sport

Discrimination fight revealed

The Football Association has stepped up its fight to combat discrimination by launching a new scheme to encourage its reporting.

Four short animated films have been released and are available on the governing body's website outlining what to do if someone experiences or witnesses discrimination while attending or taking part in a football match.

They are being distributed widely across professional and grassroots football and bring to life the animations of artist Paul Trevillion, known for his 'You Are the Ref' cartoons, and narrated by former England stars Graeme Le Saux and Dion Dublin.

Ex-Chelsea and Southampton defender Le Saux said: "When discrimination takes place at any level of the game, we need to ensure that we can take positive action, and the best means of ensuring that is to encourage players and supporters to report it.

"These films will help explain to players and supporters both the importance of reporting discrimination and highlight the many ways in which they can do so."

There have been a number of high-profile incidents in the sports in recent seasons of abusive behaviour from players and supporters and referees have been told to prepare for an increase in the reporting of such events.

It is hoped players and fans will be encouraged to make their protests known if they encounter racism, homophobia, anti-Semitism and other acts of discrimination.

FA board member and chair of the Inclusion Advisory Board Heather Rabbatts added: "We know under-reporting of discrimination of in the game is an issue, therefore instilling confidence is key.

"The FA and the Inclusion Advisory Board has worked with stakeholders across the game in developing these films which hope to convey how easy it is to report."

Lord Herman Ouseley, Chair of Kick It Out, football's equality and inclusion campaign, said: "Kick It Out welcomes any material that will increase knowledge amongst players and supporters of how to report discriminatory incidents which occur across the professional game and grassroots level.

"These films need to gain maximum exposure and be disseminated as widely as possible so that awareness of the reporting procedures reaches all the game's stakeholders throughout the country.

"Kick It Out encourages The FA to continue producing information on the reporting procedures to ensure equality can be achieved by all."