AN online survey has been launched to better understand perceptions of discrimination in grassroots football.
The FA survey is part of research to establish whether there are barriers which may prevent people from reporting incidents.
The aim is to encourage the grassroots community to report discrimination when it occurs to their County FA and to improve the handling and management of cases across the country.
Experiencing or witnessing any form of discrimination can be very distressing and The FA are committed to improving the outcomes for victims as well as the reporting process.
The research will explore perceptions and experiences of discrimination among those in the grassroots game, as well as how diversity is embedded across the County FA network and whether relevant information on reporting is reaching audiences at a local level.
"We want to tackle all forms of discrimination across the grassroots game and that requires people being confident in reporting acts of discrimination when they encounter it," explained Dal Darroch, The FA head of diversity and inclusion strategic programmes.
“Only by reporting incidents can we truly drive this out of the game through fair, consistent processes."
Earlier this year, The FA rolled out their separate 'Tell Us, We’ll Tackle It' anti-discrimination campaign, and phase one of this current research included interviews and discussion groups with County FA CEOs and governance staff, as well as players, volunteers, referees, coaches and club and league officials across the country.
The FA are now asking adult players, parents of young players and the grassroots workforce to complete an online survey to ensure the voices of all involved can be heard.
The findings will then be used to identify best practices to improve the reporting processes and ensure that discrimination cases are handled efficiently and with sensitivity.
Mark Ives, The FA head of judicial services, added: "Everybody’s input is vital so I would encourage those across the grassroots game – whether they’re a player, coach, volunteer, match official or otherwise involved – to take the time to share your views with us, based on your own experiences, so we can improve the way we manage incidents of discrimination.
"We've taken very positive steps in recent years to tackle discrimination and this research will help us further. The views of those involved in the game at a local level are extremely important to us."
If you're involved in grassroots football, either as a player, parent, volunteer, coach, match official or other, The FA want to hear your views!
take the survey now