Paddle Australia has become the newest member of the Australian Pride in Sport program, committing to further develop and enhance the inclusion of LGBTQ people.
ACON Health’s Pride in Sport program is the only sporting inclusion program specifically designed to assist sporting organisations with the inclusion of employees, athletes, coaches, volunteers, officials and spectators with diverse genders and sexualities.
Being a Pride in Sport member means changing practices and working towards a more inclusive, safe, and healthy sporting environment for people with diverse sexualities and genders.
Paddle Australia started its Pride in Sport journey in 2022 as a member of the Pride in Sport Collective, running a number of inclusive Come & Try Days, and officially formalised its 12-month membership to Pride in Sport in March 2023.
Phil Jones, CEO of Paddle Australia is excited about the opportunity that Pride in Sport will play when helping promote positive messages and examples around LGBTQ inclusion for sport and recreation programs at Paddle Australia.
“Paddle Australia is pleased to have partnered with Pride in Sport. We aim to further our inclusive practices so that everyone feels welcome.
“Paddle Australia is committed to creating a safe and inclusive space for all people, regardless of gender expression, gender identity and sexuality. Inclusion is at the core of our values as an organisation, reflective of the diversity of our local communities,” Jones said.
Beau Newell, National Program Manager of Pride in Sport Australia, said actual and perceived social exclusion is a leading cause of preventable death in Australia, and creating a much healthier and safer sporting culture for LGBTQ people has never been more important.
“By joining Pride in Sport and working with ACON, Paddle Australia is showing the community that they care about the health and wellbeing of their athletes, and members across the nation” Newell said.
“Congratulations to Paddle Australia for leading the way in changing Australia’s sporting culture, to be more inclusive.”