GLAAD Calls on NBA to Speak Out against Joakim Noah's Use of Anti-Gay Slur

Rich Ferraro
Director of Communications, GLAAD
(646) 871-8011
ferraro@glaad.org

May 23, 2011

May 23, 2011, New York, NY – The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), the nation's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) media advocacy and anti-defamation organization, today responded after Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah shouted an anti-gay slur toward a fan during a game on Sunday night.

"Last month the NBA sent an important message about how such slurs fuel a climate of intolerance and are unacceptable," said GLAAD President Jarrett Barrios. "These anti-gay remarks, coming so soon after, demonstrate how much needs to be done."

Noah has since apologized stating: "I apologize. The fan said something to me that I thought was disrespectful, and I got caught up in the moment, and I said some things that I shouldn't have said. I was frustrated and I don't mean no disrespect to anybody. I just got caught up."

"Noah's apology is a start," Barrios continued. "We are confident that the NBA will now take disciplinary measures and hasten its work with us to tell all players that there is no place for anti-gay words and attitudes in the game."

This morning GLAAD reached out to the NBA and the Chicago Bulls to discuss next steps.

Following the use of an anti-gay slur by Kobe Bryant, GLAAD began a partnership with the LA Lakers and the NBA.  The Lakers sent a message about the use of such slurs through a video that was shown at home games during the Lakers' playoff run. GLAAD is actively working with the NBA to foster a safe environment for all fans, employees and players.