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The Royal Yachting Association (RYA) has proudly announced the launch of the LGBTQIA+ Network. The network aims to make equality and inclusion for those that identify as LGBTQIA+ a reality in the industry, reaching not just RYA members, but also stretching across to RYA affiliates and the wider boating community.
The group is open to anyone who is an ally of the LGBTQIA+ community or identifies as part of LGBTQIA+ in the industry, and actively supports the RYA’s ambition for a diverse and welcoming culture.
The network has been launched during LGBT+ History Month, an annual event held to celebrate and reflect on historic milestone events and the people who contributed to them from the LGBTQIA+ community. For the first time, this year the RYA has visualised its support for the LGBTQIA+ community by swapping the traditional RYA blue, red and white logo for the rainbow flag across its main social media channels. The organisation will also be using its social media channels across the month to highlight the importance of being a welcoming and inclusive institution.
The announcement follows the publishing of the RYA Equality, Diversity, and Inclusivity Strategy, which was launched last year. The strategy outlines the RYA’s plan to develop a sports culture that celebrates diversity and is free from discrimination and prejudice.
Mel Hide, RYA director of external affairs, said, “Inclusivity and equality should be at the heart of boating, and we believe creating a welcoming and sustainable sport for all to join, regardless of their romantic and sexual orientation, sex characteristic or gender, is vital. The group’s aim will be to raise the profile of boating amongst the LGBTQIA+ community and to have a positive influence on the strategic direction and communications at the RYA.
“Launching the network is another milestone in the RYA’s Equality, Diversity, and Inclusivity Strategy, and we encourage anyone that wishes to get involved with building a culture of inclusivity to join the LGBTQIA+ Network.”
For more information, visit RYA.
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