- Premier League players should receive mandatory sexual consent training
- This was introduced in an attempt to tackle ‘gender-based violence’
- PFA chief executive Maheta Malongo wants players educated on the subject
- Activist Shaista Aziz is happy the Premier League has taken action
- However, she is angry that people accused of serious crimes are allowed to play
Premier League players and staff are set to undergo mandatory sexual consent training this season.
Discussions took place between the Premier League and campaign groups End Violence for Women, the Three Hijabis and Level Up in June on the issue of tackling ‘gender-based violence’, and new rules are now to be implemented .
Shaista Aziz, co-manager of the Three Hijabis, praised the Premier League for their swift action but slammed the FA for their lack of urgency in dealing with the issue.
“We are delighted to see that the Premier League has adopted the action plan we sent to them in our open letter and to the FA on the urgency needed to tackle gender-based violence in football,” said Aziz, as reported by The Telegraph.
“This is an important and long overdue first step in the right direction. However, we need greater transparency on how these new guidelines will be implemented by Premier League clubs.
“Any program to address gender-based violence must be implemented by specialists in violence against women and girls if it is to be a meaningful change.
“Details matter, as does transparency and accountability. We have had productive meetings with the Premier League on these issues and look forward to meeting again to discuss the implementation of our demands.
“The FA, on the other hand, continue to be opaque, quirky and dismissive in their behavior towards us. We call on the FA to urgently engage in the fight against gender-based violence in football. ‘
Professional Footballers’ Association chief executive Maheta Molango has also called for more action to educate players about sexual consent.
“More needs to be done in terms of educating the player – sexual consent, what’s acceptable, what’s not, and making sure that’s part of their mandatory education,” he said.
The Premier League’s decision comes after a top-flight player was arrested on suspicion of rape last month.
The 29-year-old international footballer was further arrested while in police custody following two further allegations of the rape of another woman in April and June 2021, but it has since been confirmed that he will not face ” no further action” for the June 2021 violation.
His bail was extended until October and he is currently free to play matches.
In their open letter to the Premier League and the FA in June, the three campaign groups demanded that players be automatically suspended if they are arrested on suspicion of rape.
Aziz remained angry that his group’s request was not met.
“It’s incoherent and inconceivable that in 2022 a top footballer is charged with these very serious crimes and his employer is saying, ‘It’s okay, he can keep going to work. This is outrageous and completely against our open letter,” she added.
An FA spokesman told The Telegraph that the organization takes any allegation of sexual consent “extremely seriously”.
They said: “The FA strongly condemns violence and bias of any kind, including misogyny, and encourages anyone who has experienced or witnessed this type of behavior to report it to the police and relevant authorities so that it can be investigated.
“The FA will take the allegations very seriously and will take action within its jurisdiction. Any such cases would be investigated once any criminal or statutory investigation is complete.