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Recognised as the UK's best-loved hotel chain, Premier Inn rebranded themselves as Premier Out on 8th September, as one of a number of well-known brands supporting Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces campaign.
Spearheaded by Stonewall, Paddy Power, and the Gay Football Supporters' Network, the campaign aims to tackle one of the toughest challenges in sport, and kick homophobia out of football.
Creating a bespoke ad for the day which was promoted in newspapers and on its social media channels, Premier Inn became Premier Out and repeated their non-discrimination promise.
Commenting on the rebranding in support of the campaign, Russell Braterman, Premier Inn Brand Marketing Director, said, "Whether it's welcoming the guests who stay with us, or the staff we employ, Premier Inn is fully committed to equal opportunities. We'll never discriminate because of age, sex, race, nationality, ethnicity, religion or belief, disability, gender reassignment, sexual orientation or civil partnership.
“It's for that reason that we're delighted to lend our support to this fantastic initiative. As a brand we welcome thousands of football fans, teams and players through our doors every year, which is why we are proud to be supporting this campaign and making Premier Inn, Premier Out for rainbow laces."
Arsenal stars Theo Walcott, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Olivier Giroud, Santi Cazorla and club captain Mikel Arteta kicked-off the campaign with a high-profile TV ad - ‘The Changing Room’ - designed to raise awareness of the issues around homophobia in football, and lead the charge in changing the beautiful game.
Stonewall, with the Gay Football Supporters Network (GFSN) and Paddy Power, sent rainbow laces to every professional club and footballer in Britain to show support for gay players and fans.
Among the 5,000 professional footballers in the UK, not one of them is openly gay – a scenario with odds of over a quadragintillion to one. Stonewall’s own research shows that seven in ten football fans have heard or witnessed homophobia on the terraces and more than 40 per cent believe football to be an anti-gay sport.
Ruth Hunt, Chief Executive of Stonewall, said, 2We know that homophobia, biphobia and transphobia are still rife in football. That needs to change. Last year’s Rainbow Laces campaign was a great start but there’s still a long way to go both on and off the pitch. The clubs and players supporting the campaign and lacing up this weekend are taking a powerful stand against homophobia in our national game. Our work in sport will continue all year round, but for this week we need as many people as possible to show their support and get involved.2
ITP member Whitbread, for which Premier Inn is a key brand, is a former winner of the Springboard Awards for Excellence for Diversity in Employment, highlighting their commitment and good practice regarding diversity in the workplace.