Kick It Out statement on Premier League mandatory equality measures
Kick It Out, football’s equality and inclusion organisation, has welcomed Premier League clubs agreeing yesterday (13 November) to implement mandatory measures in relation to inclusion and anti-discrimination in the game.
The 20 clubs agreed to adopt a new Equality Standard that has been implemented by Kick It Out and was introduced in 2004 as a voluntary programme. The Premier League clubs have agreed to amend Rule J.4 to now make the Standard mandatory.
Under the new rule, all Premier League clubs are obliged to obtain the entry level of the Equality Standard by the end of the 2015/16 season and to make two further levels by the end of 2018/19.
The Equality Standard will include clubs committing to objective and structured recruitment processes for senior coaching and administrative positions and the clubs’ adoption of the rule will be audited.
A statement from Kick It Out reads: “Kick It Out welcomes the announcement of the mandatory measures being implemented by the Premier League to enhance the equality policies and practices within its clubs, and the introduction of recruitment processes for senior coaching and executive positions.
“Kick It Out has been at the forefront of ensuring equality forms an integral part of the business practices and programme development of clubs having introduced the Racial Equality Standard in 2004, later evolving into the Equality Standard for Professional Clubs.
“During the last decade, we have supported clubs throughout the Premier League and Football League towards achieving levels of the Equality Standard, and have seen Arsenal and Aston Villa take the lead in embedding equality practices across their day-to-day operations.
“We look forward to continuing to contribute towards the implementation of Football’s Equality Standard using the skills and expertise we have in this area, and seeing rapid progress made by clubs towards attaining, and excelling beyond, the required levels.
“Kick It Out is also pleased to see the commitment made towards increasing coaching opportunities for women and black and ethnic minorities through the Elite Coaching Apprenticeship Scheme, and the formation of an advisory board to help guide this process and to support all candidates.”
The Premier League Elite Coach Apprenticeship Scheme (ECAS), a two-year programme for Category One Club Academy coaches, will have six additional places reserved each year for three BAME coaches and three female coaches, who will also be placed in full-time roles at academies at Premier League clubs.
ECAS is part of the Elite Player Performance Plan and is a project that provides the best up-and-coming Academy coaches in the professional game with the opportunity to learn from other sports, other elite learning environments.
In addition, the Premier League has also identified unconscious bias training courses for league and club executives, which can help recognise that bias is not always the result of conscious decisions.