Everton Football Club has marked its first year as an Advanced Premier League Equality Standard holder by releasing a video showing how its equality and diversity work has continued to reach new heights since receiving the prestigious accreditation.
The Advanced Premier League Equality Standard, which the Club was awarded in March 2020, is designed to reflect current equality legislation and case law and provides a framework to guide professional football clubs towards achieving equality, ranking them Preliminary, Intermediate or Advanced.
Everton’s Advanced award followed on from the launch of its All Together Now campaign in 2018, which celebrates diversity and increases awareness of everything done by the Club and Everton in the Community to promote equality.
The video, released on IDAHOBIT Day (International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia), showcases the range of equality and diversity activity undertaken by Everton and Everton in the Community over the past 12 months, as they continue to embed equality and diversity into everything they do.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE OR BY CLICKING HERE
In the past year, Everton has marked International Women’s Day and announced new investment and a new structure for Everton Women, promoted access for all as part of the 2021 Level Playing Field campaign, joined the Anthony Walker Foundation’s #SeeMeNow campaign, worked closely with Kick It Out and Rainbow Laces, become a Stonewall Diversity Champion and taken part in community and partnership work focusing on mental health, challenging social stigma and addressing inequality and issues around poverty.
Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and President of the Football Association, visited three of Everton in the Community’s community projects - Stand Together, Everton Veterans' Hub and Tackling the Blues - to find out about the crucial mental health support that the charity offers to different sectors of society.
The Club’s Blue Family campaign, launched in March 2020 to support the most vulnerable in our community during the pandemic, also places equality and diversity at the heart of its social action in assisting those who need it most.
Other major highlights for Everton and Everton in the Community over the past year include:
- Everton Women moving to a permanent new home at Walton Hall Park – making women’s football even more accessible in the heart of the city and close to Goodison Park.
- Winning the ‘Kick it Out’ Promoting Inclusion Award at the UK Sponsorship Awards for the ‘More Than Eleven’ kit launch, which saw members of Everton’s Disability programme star as lead models for the 2020/21 third kit.
- Becoming a Stonewall Diversity Champion on the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia.
- Everton Captain Seamus Coleman sending a message of support for Liverpool City Region Pride.
- Everton become founding signatories of the FA’s Leadership Diversity Code – a commitment to embedding greater diversity across senior leadership teams, team operations and coaching set-ups.
- Everton defender Mason Holgate and Club Management Accountant Louise Price taking part in the Anthony Walker Foundation’s ‘You Cannot Be What You Cannot See’ campaign during Black History Month – and appearing on billboards across Liverpool.
- Players and Club showing their support for Black Lives Matter.
- Marking International Women’s Day by holding a careers event with female pupils from Everton in the Community’s PL Inspires programme, Everton Women and women in key roles across Everton and the club’s charity.
- Inviting Evertonian and aspiring chef Thomas Williams, who has a visual disability, to cook for his hero Duncan Ferguson at USM Finch Farm – which was featured on BBC’s The One Show.
- Manager Carlo Ancelotti joining a call with the Duke of Cambridge and David Beckham, Tyrone Mings and Andros Townsend to discuss the importance of mental health.
- Signing up to The Employers’ Initiative on domestic abuse.
- Midfielder Tom Davies speaking with Everton in the Community participants to discuss mental health during lockdown.
- Winger Bernard opening up about his own mental health and the importance of seeking help.
- Holding a Rainbow Laces dedicated fixture.
- Hosting a Level Playing Field Weeks of Action dedicated fixture, and designating Everton Disabled Supporters' Association (EDSA) as virtual mascots for the match - the first time a group of supporters, rather than an individual, had taken part in the activity.
- Everton's men's, women's and Under-23s players marking Deaf Awareness Week by signing a special message of support.
The Club and its players are also continuing to speak out to support diversity and inclusion – Everton star Richarlison was recently nominated for the 'Football Ally' award at the 2021 LGBT+ Awards for supporting the Everton supporters’ group Rainbow Toffees and speaking publicly, alongside Lucas Digne, in support for footballers coming out as gay.
Since its launch in 2018, Everton’s All Together Now branding and the tagline 'a football family for everyone' has been used across LED perimeter boards, the jumbotron screens and in concourses at Goodison Park on matchdays and supported a number of initiatives and schemes to encourage inclusion and celebrate equality and diversity.
Sophie Cowell, Equality and Human Rights Advisor at Everton, said: “Everton has been involved in so many amazing activities this year, showing how we have taken our commitment to equality and diversity to the next level, and that it is truly embedded in everything the Club does and stands for. We are always looking for opportunities to ensure everyone is included as a ‘football family for all’.”