The Scottish FA is fully committed to promoting equity. Fairness, justice, respect for each other, inclusion, addressing inequalities and removing barriers are just some of the principles of equity that influence the Scottish FA’s development, delivery and decision making.
The Scottish FA believes that everybody should have the opportunity to participate in physical activity, sport and from a Scottish FA perspective football, and that no individual should be discriminated against for reason such as age, disability, gender reassignment, pregnancy or maternity, marriage or civil partnership, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation.
The Equality Standard is a vehicle for widening participation and opportunities especially for underrepresented groups such as women, ethnic minority groups and individuals with severe and complex needs.
Everyone within the Scottish FA is reminded that they have a critical role to play within the process. Accountability for Equity within the Scottish FA rests with the Chief Executive, but every person within the organisation should embrace the principles and processes to ensure successful delivery of the Standard.
The Scottish FA achieved Foundation Level in 2009, Preliminary level in 2012, and Intermediate level in 2014. This means that the Scottish FA is continuing to work on its action plan to address under representation as identified from the latest audit. Intermediate level focuses on increasing opportunities for a diverse range of people both internally, within the organisation, and externally, with its membership.
As well as establishing accountability at the highest level within the Scottish FA, there is the requirement to commit staff time and a budget.
The Scottish FA’s Equity policy is the key document which is at the basis of the way the company works in order to achieve its goals in the area of Equality.
Our commitment has already showed signs of success. Our Women’s Game has seen a tremendous increase in participation in the past three years, we have created new opportunities for adult football, and developed a new strategy in the area of Disability Football. The work of the Equity Football Team has also produced great results. With the launch of a new Equity Strategy and the development of a database with over 4000 contacts in the ethnic minority communities, more opportunities will be created for us to engage with these groups. These are only a few examples.
We all have a role to play in “levelling the playing field” and improving the pathways into sport for those who remain socially excluded. Hopefully as you engage in the process you will embrace the extra commitment necessary because of the enormous benefits for the existing, and potential members of the Scottish FA.