Manchester United has today announced a strategic partnership with British lesbian, gay, bi and trans (LGBT+) charity Stonewall, reinforcing its ‘All Red All Equal’ motto.
As part of the agreement, the Premier League club has entered Stonewall’s Diversity Champions programme, which helps employers embed LGBT+ inclusion within the workplace environment.
It has also signed up to Stonewall’s Workplace Allies scheme which finds ways for non-LGBT employees from both the club and Manchester United Foundation to support LGBT colleagues.
“We’re immensely proud of our relationship with Stonewall and delighted to be taking it to the next level with this strategic partnership,” said Richard Arnold, Manchester United Group Managing Director. “Diversity is a source of strength for Manchester United and ensuring a welcoming environment for LGBT+ employees and fans is a crucial part of that.
“We’re committed to making equality, diversity and inclusion integral to the way we work and this partnership with Stonewall will help us achieve that important goal, building on the range of other initiatives we have under way as part of our All Red All Equal campaign.”
The top flight side joined Stonewall’s TeamPride coalition in 2017 and has been a supporter of its Rainbow Laces campaign.
Chief Executive of Stonewall, Nancy Kelley, reiterated the role that the deal will play in eradicating discriminatory attitudes towards athletes, employees and supporters: “It’s so important for organisations to actively work towards making sport everyone’s game.
“Many LGBT+ people want to take part in sport, either as players or fans, but at the moment not everyone feels welcome. We also know that most sports fans want to see sports be better and more inclusive.
“We’re excited to continue our journey with them from being a founding member of TeamPride, to now joining us as a Diversity Champion. We look forward to working with them to help further LGBT+ equality in football.”
United’s first LGBT+ Supporters’ group, the Rainbow Devils, was formed last year, on the back of the creation of an internal LGBT+ Pride Network for employees.
Eric Najib, Leader of Rainbow Devils, added: “We’re proud to support and work alongside a club that is committed to creating an inclusive environment for LGBT+ people. There is still a lot more work to do but this partnership with Stonewall is another welcome step in the right direction.”