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The British Athletes Commission first to appoint LGB Ambassadors - Matt Lister and David Hill

The British Athletes Commission first to appoint LGB Ambassadors -
Matt Lister and David Hill

The British Athletes Commission (BAC) has recently completed some research in collaboration with Pride Sports to establish how we can best offer advice, support and guidance to lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) athletes amongst our membership.

The feedback from the athletes contained a number of recommendations one of which was to appoint an LGB Ambassador to assist the BAC in acting on the report’s recommendations and raising the visibility of the needs of LGB athlete in high performance sport.  No other “player association” in GB has looked in such depth at how to support LGB sportsmen or women before.

The BAC is therefore delighted to announce the appointment of two LGB Ambassadors – Matt Lister (World Championship medallist in Canoe Slalom) and David Hill (Paralympian and ParaTriathlete) to this important role. Matt and David will share responsibilities and duties that will include advising the BAC and our own Athlete Advisory Group as well as helping those preparing Team GB and Paralympics GB for Rio2016 and in helping with the mental welfare of high performance athletes.

Matt Lister, LGB Ambassador “After working with Stonewall to visit schools, educating students about LGBT issues, it is a huge privilege to be able to continue similar work amongst my sporting peers. I have always been proud to represent my country as an athlete, but the fact that the BAC is the first sport organisation in the UK to provide an LGB ambassadorial position and service of this level, is mind blowing. BAC are leading the way yet again, it won’t be long before we are followed I’m sure.”

David Hill, LGB AmbassadorIn addition to using my experiences to support athletes that are going through a similar journey, I think we have the power as athletes and a great opportunity to make a wider impact. As an Athlete Mentor I’m especially excited to establish relationships with LGBT organisations that operate in schools and work in equipping BAC athletes with the skills necessary to address LGBT issues within that setting.”

Ian Braid CEO, British Athletes Commission “I am delighted to welcome Matt and David into the BAC Team. We believe that the athlete focussed advice, support and guidance we offer our members is critical in high performance sport not only as a safety net but also as a positive contribution to medal winning performance. The research we undertook with the help of Pride Sports showed that there is a lot of work to be done to support LGB athletes and these appointments will be a massive boost to enable us to do this. "

Louise Englefield, Pride SportsThe appointment of ambassadors to the BAC follows through one of the key recommendations of our report. It also raises the profile of lesbian, gay and bisexual athletes in UK performance sport and marks out the BAC as a leader in inclusion amongst the player associations"


 

Notes to Editors:

About the British Athletes Commission

The British Athletes Commission (BAC) is an independent membership association, which represents the interests of athletes in high performance sports in Great Britain.  The BAC's members are from a wide range of sports (predominantly, but not exclusively, Olympic or Paralympic) and have represented their country (or GB). To find out more please visit: http://www.britishathletes.org/ 

About Pride Sports

Pride Sports was founded in 2006 and was the first, and still one of only two organisations in the UK working to challenge homophobia in sport and improve access to sport for all LGBT people across the world.

About Matt Lister

Matthew Lister is a British canoe slalom athlete, competing since the late 2000s, he has won numerous international medals as a Junior and U23, been British National Champion consecutively 2009-2013, was a reserve for the London 2012 Games, and has won two bronze medals in the C2 team event at the ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships 2011 and 2013.

About David Hill

David has competed at Athens Paralympic Games in the 100m Backstroke, finishing his swimming career with 3 World and European bronze medals. Since 2013 David has been part of the British Paratriathlon squad competing in the PT4 category.

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