Australia's biggest professional sports unite to eliminate homophobia

governorEach of Australia's five major sports has not only pledged to end homophobia, they've set out a timeline to implement policies and programs which will ensure that they do so.  This includes the Australian Football League, Australia's Rugby Union, the National Rugby League, Football Federation Australia, and Cricket Australia.

The sports leagues have agreed to implement changes that are consistent with the newly created Anti-Homophobia & Inclusion Framework by the end of August of this year, when thousands of gay rugby players, fans, and media will attend The Bingham Cup.  The Bingham Cup is the world cup of gay rugby, which Sydney is hosting this year, and is named after 9/11 hero and gay rugby player Mark Bingham.  Australian sports leaders were brought together by the organizers of the Cup as well as the leaders of the Sydney Convicts, Australia's first gay rugby union club. 

Now Australia is encouraging the rest of the world to follow their lead in committing to end homophobia.  Andrew Purchas, President of Bingham Cup Sydney 2014, has said that Australia "challenge[s] sporting organizations around the world to adopt similar policies and make sport welcoming and safe for everyone.”  Patrick Burke, President of GLAAD partner the You Can Play Project agrees, and has said that he's "confident that professional sporting organizations around the world will closely watch the work being done in Australia."

You can read the Anti-Homophobia & Inclusion Framework for Australian Sport here, on the Bingham Cup's website.  You can also check out this video, produced by Play by the Rules in conjunction with the You Can Play Project.  The video features Australian sports stars both current and past getting out the message that homophobia has no place in sports.  It will air throughout Australia on TV and in stadiums.  You can watch the video below.