Arsenal’s Premier League home game against QPR on Saturday will focus on the Club’s Arsenal for Everyone initiative, an ongoing scheme which embraces the diversity and equality of the Club and its fan base.
The match coincides with football’s equality and inclusion campaign Kick It Out’s 'One Game, One Community' Week of Action which takes place between October 18 and 29.
Saturday's matchday programme will be filled with features that showcase some of Arsenal’s work in its community which encourages everybody connected with Arsenal - irrespective of race, age, religion and belief, sexual orientation, disability and gender – to feel an equal sense of belonging.
Junior Gunners - including three of our young visually impaired supporters, Luke, Scott and Liam - will welcome players onto the pitch and line up with a display of flags representing the nationalities of the Arsenal squad.
The Club launched the Arsenal for Everyone initiative nearly five years ago to celebrate the diversity of the Arsenal family and formed a large part in the Club’s work to becoming the first professional football club to achieve the advanced level of Kick It Out’s Equality Standard, a framework devised for clubs to help with their equality and diversity practices.
The Club ensures that its disabled supporters can enjoy football with the best possible facilities at Emirates Stadium. This includes award-winning work to give disabled fans an unrivalled matchday experience with half-price season tickets for disabled supporters with accompanying carer, a dedicated matchday commentary service for visually impaired fans, the creation of an audio version of the matchday programme, provision of a disabled supporters lounge and the Premier League’s only guide dog toilet.
Arsenal’s CEO Ivan Gazidis said: “A football club is about more than just the game. It is fundamental that a football club is representative of its community, and the most visible manifestation of this is what happens on the field. We have 17 different nationalities in our squad and this is something that reflects the multiculturalism that is inherent in the world’s game, but also in the Islington community, and London on a broader scale.
“Arsenal promotes and celebrates the diversity of its fan base and I am proud of the work we are doing, but I want to also emphasise how far we still have to go to eradicate all forms of discrimination and we will continue to develop new ways as part of our ongoing commitment to doing this.”Copyright 2013 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 26 Oct 2012