Players from Sweden’s Kiruna IF ice hockey club will wear uniforms decked out in the colors of the gay pride flag for the next 12 months as part of a bid to become the first sporting association to receive certification by the Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights.
The Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights has certified businesses and organizations since 2008 that are committed to providing a good working environment and respectful treatment of LGBTI people and Kiruna IF’s certification process began in June.
Kiruna’s participation in the process has bee welcomed by the Swedish Ice Hockey Association for pushing its core value that anyone who wants to participate in ice hockey should be allowed to do so on equal terms and with the proper respect.
‘Kiruna IF’s acceptance project is a laudable initiative that is in line with Swedish hockey’s core values, mission and vision,’ Swedish Ice Hockey Association director of hockey development Tommy Boustedt said.
‘Participation and democracy shall be the defining features in the work to develop our sport.’
During the 2014-2015 ice hockey season players with the club will give talks in schools across the city of Kiruna in collaboration with local government to stress the importance of accepting LGBTI people.