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More than 100,000 pairs of rainbow laces have been requested by the public, following the launch of this year’s campaign to kick homophobia out of football.
Spearheaded by Stonewall, Paddy Power and the Gay Football Supporters’ Network and supported by, among others, Arsenal, Manchester City, Premier League, the FA and the Football League, the campaign has been so successful that the 50,000 pairs initially ordered are long gone, and the manufacturer has run out of rainbow yarn.
Arsene Wenger has also spoken out against homophobia, saying: ‘The fight against homophobia and any discrimination is very important and we have that responsibility.’
In just the five days that this year’s campaign has been running, it has drummed up online support from footballers, rugby players, politicians, celebrities and brands, and Premiership Rugby has pledged to join in.
Richard Lane, Media Manager at Stonewall, said: ‘The response has been incredible. The excitement and enthusiasm that the campaign has generated is really remarkable and it’s inspiring to see a national conversation about homophobia in sport taking place.’
A spokesperson from Paddy Power added: ‘Football is well and truly behind the times when it comes to homophobia and with seven in ten football fans admitting to hearing homophobic chants around the terraces it’s something that it seems the nation won’t ignore. We’re so excited to have so many familiar and new faces on board supporting the campaign but want to send out a message to everyone who hasn’t already to get involved, to re-lace, re-boot and help kick homophobia out of the park.’
To find out more, please visit the rainbow laces website, and to get a pair of laces, visit a Paddy Power shop.
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