Rainbow Laces are back! Last year players from 52 football league clubs in Scotland and England laced up to show their support for gay players and supporters. This year, Dulwich Hamlet is getting in on the act, and will be the first non-League club to do so.
Non-league football can be a particularly bad for homophobic abuse. The insults and actions are still often wrongly regarded as ‘banter’ by Directors, officials, players and supporters. DHST is very clear that this is not the case. We do not tolerate any form of homophobia, or other forms of discrimination, and are actively working to promote causes that tackle these issues. The Kick it Out campaign were a prominent part of Non-League Day last Saturday. We were pleased that the Rabble displayed the Kick it Out banner at both ends of the ground.
We are therefore delighted that Gavin Rose and the team have agreed to support the campaign by wearing the laces on Saturday for our FA Cup game versus Worthing FC. We are sure that they will carry this message throughout the season, and continue to hold up the good name of Dulwich Hamlet around the country.
The Rainbow Laces will also be available for fans to wear on Saturday. You will be able to pick a pair up at the 12th Man stand as you enter the ground, in exchange for a donation. Your contributions will be split 50:50 between the 12th Man scheme and the Gay Supporters Football Network (which receives no formal funding). The GSFN is a membership organisation for individuals, LGBT-friendly football clubs and fangroups and has been in the fight against homophobia for 25 years. Please do give generously.
So remember, as a popular indepdendent scarf that is doing the rounds this season says, “ordinary morality is for ordinary football clubs”. If we continue working together, then we can help change the game forever. Pledge your support by Tweeting #RainbowLaces and #dhfc.