14 July 2014:
Lord Faulkner of Worcester asked Her Majesty’s Government how they plan to ensure that professional sports clubs follow the Accessible Stadia Guidance.
My Lords, I beg leave to ask the Question standing in my name on the Order Paper, and declare an interest as vice-president of the charity, Level Playing Field.
Lord Gardiner of Kimble (Con): My Lords, the Government are committed to ensuring that all spectators have enhanced and appropriate access to sporting venues and services, and that professional sports clubs are aware of their responsibilities towards disabled spectators. The Department for Culture, Media and Sport is working with the Department for Work and Pensions on a range of measures to ensure that the rights of disabled spectators are met by professional sports clubs.
Lord Faulkner of Worcester: Does the Minister agree that, although some sports are making a real effort, the situation with professional football is, as the Minister for Disabled People said when he wrote to all professional clubs in April, “woefully inadequate”, when it was revealed that only three clubs in the Premier League, the richest league in the world, comply with the requirements for the number of spaces for supporters in wheelchairs? Does he not think that the time has now come for equality law to be properly enforced and the guidelines, which have been in place since 2004, properly implemented and clear new instructions issued to the Sports Grounds Safety Authority?
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