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Volume 502: debated on Monday 7 December 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what recent steps he has taken to reduce the incidence of anti-Semitism in (a) football and (b) other sports; what recent representations he has received on that matter; what recent meetings he has had with the Football Association on that matter; and if he will make a statement. (303921)

While I have received no recent representations or held any recent meetings on the issue of tackling anti-Semitism in sport, I remain fully committed to a sporting landscape free from all forms of discrimination. To this end:

(a) Football treats anti-Semitism as it does all forms of racism as an offence under the ground regulations, giving the clubs and Police powers to deal with it should it occur. The Football Association's (FA) close working relationship with the clubs, the Police and the Crown Prosecution Service also ensures that all incidents of discrimination in football are brought to justice. In addition, The FA's anti-Semitism and Islamophobia working group, chaired by my hon. Friend the Member for Bassetlaw (John Mann) and established in July 2008, continues to explore the issues and make recommendations to the FA Board. With the Premier League and the Professional Footballer's Association, the FA also provides funding for the “Kick It Out” campaign, which tackles anti-Semitism and other forms of discrimination.

(b) Other sports that receive Government funding through Sport England and UK Sport do so on the basis of their compliance with the Equality Standard for Sport. The standard forbids discrimination on the grounds of gender, marital status, race, colour, religion, disability, age, occupation, religion or political opinion other than that in accordance with legal justification.