The St Kilda Football Club has taken home the award for Highest Ranking Overall sporting organisation at the recent Pride in Sport awards.

Held in Melbourne, the awards worked to recognise exceptional efforts in making sport more inclusive of LGBTI people.

The event was produced by Pride in Sport, the not-for-profit sporting inclusion program spearheaded by ACON.

The awards showcased the results of the Pride in Sport Index (PSI), the national benchmarking instrument used to assess LGBTI inclusion within Australian sport. The PSI was developed by ACON in conjunction with the Australian Human Rights Commission, the Australian Sports Commission, and Bingham Cup Sydney.

ACON’s Vice President Andrew Purchas said the PSI allowed sport organisations and clubs to benchmark their LGBTI inclusive policies and practices annually.

“In 2014, Australia’s major sporting codes signed up to the Australian Anti-Homophobia and Inclusion Framework for Australian Sport,” he said.

“These awards and the index continue this important work as they provide sporting organisations with an opportunity to reflect on their work in the inclusion of LGBTI participants and staff, and identify areas they can address to ensure their sport is truly inclusive.

“Many of Australia’s sporting organisations are recognising the positive steps needed to ensure your sexuality, gender identity, or intersex status does not impact your ability to play, watch, or be involved with sport at any level – and we’re proud to celebrate those success stories at the Pride in Sport awards.”

Cricket Victoria were recognised as the Highest Ranking State Sporting Organisation at the awards, while the NRL took out the Highest Ranking National Sporting Organisation award.

The Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Corporation was the recipient of the Achievement Award for Most Improved.

Three individuals across various sporting disciplines were awarded for their efforts in making their respective sports more inclusive of LGBTI players, employees, and fans, while two community awards were also handed out.

Pride in Sport co-patron and one of the world’s leading cricketers, Alex Blackwell, said the awards were helping to pave the way for LGBTI inclusion.

“Sport has had an incredibly positive impact on my life during my 15-year international cricket career,” she said.

“I have experienced all the health and social benefits that come with playing sport at the highest level.

“Sadly the evidence tells us that sport is not a particularly welcoming place for all Australians, especially young LGBTI people, arguably the group that could most benefit from sport.

“Now armed with this knowledge, sporting organisations are joining Pride in Sport so they can effectively break down the barriers to LGBTI inclusion and attract the largest and more diverse participation.”

Program Manager for Pride in Sport, Casey Conway, said the PSI has seen a significant shift in practice with LGBTI inclusion in sport.

“With a wide range of sporting organisations participating, we are seeing a strong commitment to providing safer and more inclusive environments and experiences for LGBTI people,” he said.

2018 Pride in Sport Awards Recipients


Award Recipient
Highest Ranking Overall St. Kilda Football Club
Highest Ranking State Sporting Organisation Cricket Victoria
Highest Ranking National Sporting Organisation National Rugby League
Achievement Award for Most Improved Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Corporation
LGBTI Ally Award Emma Staples, Cricket Australia
LGBTI Inclusive Coach Reid Smith, Perth Pythons
LGBTI Community Sport Perth Pythons Hockey Club
LGBTI Out Role Model Jeremy Archer, Brisbane Tritons Water Polo Club
LGBTI Inclusion Initiative National Water Polo League Pride Cup and Shield

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