The recent injustices related to the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Aubrey and Breonna Taylor have led to a groundswell of movement aiming to dismantle racist systems.
SportCheer England believe black lives matter, and stand in solidarity with black cheerleading coaches, gym owners, athletes, event producers and our wider community. We also recognise that simply changing our logo, or releasing a statement of support is an empty gesture, unless it is a catalyst for real change.
We recognise the current lack of diversity on our board and in our sport, and acknowledge that this needs to change if we are to create an inclusive National Governing Body that represents, supports and welcomes everybody.
Over the next few months we intend to look at practical and effective ways we can shape our policies to reflect and embrace a culture of diversity and inclusion. As a first step we have this week engaged an experienced Diversity and Inclusion advisor (Alicia Wedderburn-Graham) to work with the board.
We also intend to reach out to our BIPOC and BAME athletes and coaches (as well as other underrepresented groups, to make sure that we are working in a way that promotes intersectionality) to listen and learn from them, how we can best serve them within the sport.
These times are all too familiar. We recognise that not speaking about this sooner is hurtful. We will do better. We support all black athletes, their families, coaches, gym owners and the wider black community.
We see you and we hear you. We stand with you.
It’s important to us that this statement isn’t just centred around whiteness or doing things in places that are “easy to change”, but that the commitment is to anti -racism in the lives of all SportCheer board members in and outside of cheer. Over the coming months we will commit to the research and practical outworking of that personal commitment, as well as the implementation of our commitment within the NGB.
Alicia has also recommended some useful Instagram accounts to follow: