This report explores the factors that prevent or promote the participation of minority youth in sports-related civic activities. It examines discrimination in sports based on ethnicity or sexual orientation. Questions asked include: what obstacles to equality are there in access to and participation in sports-related activities? What has been done to promote equality? What kinds of discussions have taken place? What are good practices? What needs to be done in the future?
Issues examined include stereotypes and attitudes to minorities, the relationship between coaching and bringing up youth and increasing youth participation in planning the content of sports activities. In addition, the report examines the problems minorities face in accessing information on sports activities and the need for those involved in youth work to increase their knowledge of minority issues. The commitment of sports clubs to anti-discrimination work and the importance of cooperation between different sectors are also examined.
Previous research has shown that minority youth experience similar types of discrimination in different situations. Types of discrimination include being excluded from the group, being belittled and made fun of, being called names, being branded different and being threatened and subjected to violence. These problems exist in sports-related civic activities as well and are receiving increasing attention.
This report is part of the Yhdenvertaisuus Etusijalle 4 (YES4) project. The minority- and sports-related discussions which have taken place among researchers, people involved in the project and those working at grass roots level were the starting point for the report. Interviews with experts in the fields of sports-related civic activities, multiculturalism, sexual minorities and youth work form the greatest part of the background data used.