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Diversity and inclusion survey launched in Island high schools

Joined-up approach aims to root out racism

Racist abuse towards high profile footballers could be discouraging people on the Isle of Man from taking up the sport.

That's according to Isle of Man FA (IOMFA) Chairman Stephen Carter, after the launch of a new survey to gather data on discrimination in the game.

It will go out to all high school students and help to form an inclusion and diversity strategy.

The document is being circulated in conjunction with People of Colour Isle of Man and the Department of Education, Sport and Culture and will be live for four weeks.

It's after Rushen United striker Furo Davies approached the IOMFA to discuss his experiences in the game.

Mr Davies, speaking to Local Democracy Reporter Chris Cave, says he's been impressed with the FA's approach:

Mr Carter hopes the survey will allow Manx football's governing body to fully understand the issues surrounding discrimination in the sport.

He spoke with LDR Chris Cave:

A number of English Premier League players have reported racist abuse on social media in recent months.

"Social media plays such a big part in this now of course it might not be face-to-face discrimination that's happening; it could be bullying, it could be anything like that done on social media", Mr Carter said.

He added: "Understanding [social media] through our safeguarding standards is to ensure that we have got the right environment for people to play in, to coach in, to referee in, and that everyone feels protected within that."

Mr Davies, who works as a teacher at Ballakermeen High School, says the survey is just the start in creating a better environment for all.

"I've been really impressed with the FA and I didn't expect it to be honest", he told the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

"They understand that this is just a starting point. It's not that we're just looking at race.

"I think there's a potential for [looking at] homophobia, sexism, for problems with disabilities, so I think Isle of Man FA seem to be really conscious about these things and trying to make it a better and safer and more inclusive sport."

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