Before this season commenced, the Foxes Trust highlighted a campaign supported by all major organisations involved in football, including the Football Supporters Association, to Protect The Game, aimed at improving the behaviour of players, managers and fans. The original article is here: Football unites to improve participant & fan behaviour – 2023-24 – Foxes Trust
Regarding fan behaviour, one particular area of concern was the issue of offensive chanting, gesturing and the displaying of offensive messages based on football-related tragedies. It was stated that regulation changes and tough new measures have been introduced, and that any occurrences will see people who are found to have committed offences face stadium bans and potential criminal prosecution.
Within the article JoeBlott, FSA National Council member said : “The FSA welcomes the work that has been done to address the growing concern about football tragedy abuse. Vital to its success will be education and the role supporters have in developing empathy and understanding, talking about the negative and harmful impacts, but so too is recognition of consequences for supporters who continue to participate in such behaviour”.
“Supporters have a long track record of policing ourselves so it’s vital that we show real leadership and demonstrate our opposition to tragedy chants, gestures and slurs at all grounds and on social media. Let’s Keep the passion and lose the poison.”
It is disappointing that these increased powers have had to have been enforced by Leicestershire Police this month, as a 20 year old Sunderland fan has been given a three-year football banning order after he admitted making an offensive gesture – one that that referenced the helicopter crash – during Leicester City’s game against Sunderland on 24 October.
Given the offence took place so close to the 5-year anniversary of the loss of our club’s chairman and four other people, it was a particularly upsetting.
The Foxes Trust welcomes the ban being enforced and encourages fellow fans to call out any such incidents witnessed inside grounds by reporting to the nearest steward or through established reporting channels. If you see or hear unacceptable behaviour on a matchday, report it. Please text 6066 starting your message with FOXES.