Chris Summersell from Level Playing Field tells us that though much progress has been made for disabled fans in recent years, many disabled fans are still left frustrated by lack of access. Here he urges fans to get involved in the groups week of action...
Level Playing Field’s Weeks of Action 2015 campaign is now in full swing but it is not too late for you to get involved with this annual initiative that celebrates access and inclusion for all disabled fans.
Football has now become a truly global game due to the unprecedented support and interest of thousands upon thousands of supporters who turn up week in, week out to support their team regardless of their fortunes on and off the field. It is a chance to feel togetherness, that collective ‘something’ that unites football fans everywhere, bringing people together and giving them something to look forward to each weekend.
Unfortunately the fan experience is not the same for all fans. Disabled fans are often left frustrated with their match day experience or feel unable to attend due to a lack of accessible services at football grounds. Football has made great strides in tackling many forms of discrimination over the years, but unfortunately many disabled football fans still endure poor conditions at football grounds, from discriminatory ticketing policies and the inability to sit with your own fans, to poor sight lines and lack of basic accessible provisions such as an accessible toilet or disabled car parking.
In 2015, the ugly truth is disabled fans still face a range of barriers that prevent them from the simple act of going to a game of football. A game they love just as much as their fellow fans.
Progress is being made, but there is still long way to go and this is why our Weeks of Action campaign is so important. We want to strike a positive message, to celebrate the good things clubs do in partnership with their disabled fans and to promote the message of access and inclusion to the widest possible audience. The more support we get from all fans, the more we keep this message at the top of the football agenda and the closer we’ll get to an equality of fan experience for all fans.
You can join in our Weeks of Action by posting your messages of support on social media, including photos of your matchday view using our #united4access hashtag. You can find us on Twitter and on Facebook.
You can also visit our website to find out more about the Level Playing Field Weeks of Action 2015. Thanks for all your support and watch out for more Weeks of Action news next week!