Human beings are an amazingly diverse lot when it comes to identity, temperament, personality, sexuality and gender.


Sex and gender discrimination occurs when people are typecast in a negative and limiting way; demeaned simply because of how they identify. 

Sport mirrors society. Around the club, you might: 

  • Hear derogatory remarks and slurs being made to people’s faces or behind their backs 
  • Notice a general hostility or unfriendliness toward, and suspicion of, people in the club who identify as LGBTIQA+
  • See a marked difference in how the club’s LGBTIQA+ identifying players are treated, compared to others.


Belittling someone and treating them as if they are of less value because of their identity and sexuality always hurts, always causes harm, even if this isn’t all that visible.

Being the butt of crude remarks and put-downs is always hurtful and harmful. It’s no fun being judged as inferior, or a lesser human being by people who don’t challenge themselves to learn about the lived experiences of those who aren’t like them. 

Being on the receiving end of these attitudes, your sense of worth and confidence takes a hit, and it can be hard to bounce back.

This discrimination, this form of discounting human value, goes to the heart of health and well-being in our community; social cohesion loses out to individual battles of depression, anxiety, bullying and suicide. 


When a club aspires to become a place of respect, safety, fun, fairness and success, you can guarantee it has re-framed things.

Old, ignorant stereotypes are seen as unhelpful and destructive, and club people actively put their mind to replacing them with the club expectations that everyone is valued, respected and welcomed.

Everyone works side by side, respectfully, with others in and around the club.

The discrimination is called out and dealt with constructively; club people support each other in holding one another to account, and  sanctions are applied to those who discriminate against the LGBTIQA+ community. 

Club Respect advice:

Step 1 – Take notice


  • Be prepared to subject your own attitudes, behaviours and language to scrutiny regarding people belonging to LGBTIQA+ communities.
  • What do you really think and feel about people who are different to you in regard to sex and gender identification?


Step 2 – Be alert


Be alert to the attitudes, language and behaviours of those around you, such as when a coach, a spectator or a parent says to a player, “your type don’t belong on our team”.


Step 3 – Speak up


It can be difficult and sometimes dangerous to call out discrimination based on gender identity, sexual identity or sexuality.

We know that this is why people sometimes choose to turn a blind eye and remain uneasily silent.

But, sex and gender discrimination, in and around your club, with its negative impacts, will continue unless it is called out by you and others.

We think people like you are looking for a way to break the cycle of silence, a way that is safe, proactive and consistent.

Club Respect has created SMART steps to help you.