RYA Scotland aim for LGBT Charter
In 2016, RYA Scotland became the first Scottish Governing Body to achieve the Advanced Level of the Sports Councils’ Equality Standard for Sport. Following this success, RYA Scotland made a commitment to increasing diversity amongst participants in sailing and boating. They are continuing with that promise in aiming to achieve LGBT Youth Scotland’s LGBT Charter.
In the original award we acknowledged some areas for future action and development, specifically continuing to gather data to gain a greater understanding of participants, and challenging external perceptions of the sport, especially amongst under-represented groups such as the LGBT community.
RYA Scotland Chief Executive Officer James Allan commented on the ongoing aspiration of RYA Scotland to achieve the LGBT Charter. “The intention behind it is to demonstrate that boating across Scotland is fully inclusive, we have a feeling that we have a strong representation from the LGBT community within boating but we don’t necessarily know and we want to be sure that our sport doesn’t present any unconscious barriers to people participating and feeling welcomed into our community.
“We think that working towards the LGBT Charter will take us on that journey and once we have completed it we’ll hopefully demonstrate to everybody and particularly those who are interested in joining our community, that we are open and accessible to all.”
Jane Griffin of LGBT Youth Scotland recently presented at the RYA Scotland Club and Principals day and commented on the aspiration.
“The LGBT charter is a programme that allows an organisation to look at itself and how inclusive it is for LGBT people. The LGBT Charter supports you to look at policies and practice within the organisation, provides staff training, looks at resources and how inclusive these are and at how your organisation interacts with your community. The RYA works with clubs and training centres and we will look at how RYA Scotland can help them to be more inclusive.”
Jane volunteers with Ocean Youth Trust Scotland and has seen the positive impact that getting afloat has had on young people from LGBT Youth Scotland’s thanks to a partnership between the two charities making it possible for two groups to benefit from voyages in the 2017 season. RYA Scotland hopes that we can ensure that this positive story of inclusivity and accessibility can be shared to ensure that there are no barriers to participation.
Find out more around the work of LGBT Scotland below:
This story is from RYA Scotland.