Game Changer: The Legacy of the Commonwealth Games for LGBT Young People

As part of our work with the Scottish Government Equality Unit, LGBT Youth Scotland consulted with more than 100 LGBT young people from across Scotland to find out their attitudes towards the Commonwealth Games and sport in general, and how we can use the momentum from the Games to create a lasting legacy for LGBT young people.

Their responses can be grouped into four main areas:

Access to the Commonwealth Games

  • Young people identified volunteering with Commonwealth 2014 as a valuable opportunity.
  • However, they raised concerns about LGBT safety and also the extent to which staff and volunteers at the Games would have an understanding and awareness of LGBT people.


Opportunities to engage with other Commonwealth countries

  • Young people see the Games as a valuable opportunity to engage with LGBT young people in other Commonwealth countries.
  • They also see the Games as an opportunity to highlight the human rights agenda for LGBT people in other Commonwealth countries, such as Uganda and Nigeria, and to raise the human rights record of countries outside the Commonwealth, such as Russia and Greece.

LGBT visibility

  • Young people want LGBT people to be visible within the Commonwealth Games and the cultural programme.
  • Young people highlighted the lack of LGBT sporting role models. They felt that the Commonwealth Games provided a valuable opportunity for the sporting achievements of ‘out’ LGBT competitors to be acknowledged, publicised and celebrated.

Access to sport

  • Being LGB or T and participating in sport is not incompatible: straight and LGBT athletes alike should be encouraged to act as role models, creating positive associations with sport and encouraging more LGBT young people to take part.
  • Homophobia, biphobia and transphobia in sport – whether real or perceived – are a major barrier to participation. Ways to identify and challenge this should be explored and acted upon.
  • Some young people said experience of homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying in PE at school made them less likely to participate in sport. Again, ways to identify and challenge this should be explored and acted upon.
  • The consultation also highlighted additional practical barriers for transgender young people, including gendered sports teams and changing rooms.

Click here to download the full report and find out our recommendations.