Premier League links up with Stonewall to boost LGBT involvement in game

The Premier League has announced a three-year partnership with LGBT rights group Stonewall that aims to boost equality in football.

The agreement will see clubs work with Stonewall to encourage LGBT participation in the game and crack down on anti-gay abuse both at football grounds or online.

The Premier League and Stonewall said they wanted to create "an environment where everyone can be themselves," including the promotion of LGBT fan groups.

The league said it would also take steps "to ensure it provides an inclusive environment for LGBT people it employs and engages with."

In a statement, it added that there were "a range of exciting plans to show support for the LGBT community across a round of matches in November."

Executive chairman Richard Scudamore said: "Premier League football is for everyone, everywhere, and our clubs are committed to equality and diversity at all levels of the sport."

Stonewall chief executive Ruth Hunt added: "This is an important milestone for football, and for sport.

"The Premier League have stepped up and demonstrated how committed they are to helping make football inclusive and welcoming of LGBT people.

"The reasons for the lack of LGBT inclusion in sport are complex. There's no 10-point charter or pledge that will prevent someone from shouting anti-gay abuse.

"It needs concentrated work, careful attention and a thought-through strategy to ensure no one is left behind.

"We look forward to working together with the Premier League to create a game where everyone can be themselves."