To mark World Disability Day on 3rd December 2016, The FA has joined forces with the EFL and the Level Playing Field campaign to produce a short documentary on accessibility within football stadia.With over 11m disabled people living in the UK, stadiums which are accessible attract more fans and give them a more inclusive experience.
“It’s something we recognise here at The FA,” said Julie Harrington, “as well as the importance of raising awareness amongst professional clubs and providers with stadium facilities of the business case for access for disabled spectators. It’s essential that we see that every single person who is coming to our stadium has having the right to view football as everyone else.”
The film shines a light on fans that are affected by poor accessibility and the potential solutions that can be implemented without requiring a new stadium, as well as exploring what can be done to tackle these issues. Derby County, MK Dons, and Wrexham have all taken part in the film.
As part of its on-going commitment to accessibility, the EFL has also launched its new accessibility supporter guide, a 120-page handbook for EFL clubs on how to improve the whole match-day experience for disabled supporters from making ticket purchases right through to leaving the ground.
Shaun Harvey, EFL Chief Executive, said: "The EFL has long been committed to ensuring that football provides an open environment that is inclusive and accessible to all.
"We will continue to work collectively with our clubs, supporter organisations and the wider football authorities to improve standards and develop increased awareness in order to ensure that our matches are an enjoyable experience for everyone.
"We hope this newly launched Accessible Supporter Guide will become a valuable tool in helping clubs provide every supporter with the best possible match day experience."
Chair of Level Playing Field, Tony Taylor, “Level Playing Field is delighted to have been involved in the making of the Access for All Film, which demonstrates the importance of good accessibility for disabled spectators. We hope that it will inspire more and more clubs to recognise the positive benefits that Access for All brings for clubs, supporters and the wider community. Football really can and does make a huge difference – let’s make it Access for All.”