The AFL has made a resounding statement in support of marriage equality, taking the unprecedented step of changing its logo at league headquarters to ‘YES’.
The change was made AFL House in Melbourne on Wednesday, with a tradesman pictured covering the usual AFL logo with the temporary sign.
‘The AFL is committed to equality and diversity, and we support the rights of all Australians to live, work and play free from discrimination,’ the AFL tweeted alongside a photo of the sign.
The AFL has made a resounding statement in support of marriage equality, taking the unprecedented step of changing its logo at league headquarters to ‘YES’
The league also considered replacing AFL logos at grounds hosting this week’s preliminary finals with the word ‘YES’, but decided against it, The Age reported.
Wednesday’s sign change has caused a stir online, with many suggesting the AFL should not be pushing a political agenda.
‘Just worry about the footy. You are not the UN. People go to the footy to enjoy and get involved in the game itself. Not same-sex marriage,’ one wrote.
‘Stick to sport, we love sport to get away from politics and personal opinions outside of sport,’ another said.
AFL identities Alastair Clarkson Ben Brown, Max Gawn, Dyson Heppell, Darcy Vescio and Meg Hutchins were among those supporting the move on Wednesday
The league also considered replacing AFL logos at grounds hosting this week’s preliminary finals with the word ‘YES’, but decided against the move
‘Sorry, but until you reject sponsorship dollars from Etihad Airlines, which is owned by a government that can punish same-sex sexual activity with death, this is pure tokenism,’ yet another wrote.
But many others firmly backed the league’s move.
‘Supporting equality means they promote inclusion in the game and that they support all their players from all backgrounds… good on them!’ one said.
Another wrote: ‘Brilliant AFL!! Of course the organisation should be seeking a world free of discrimination for ALL involved in this great game.’
The move has caused a stir online, with many suggesting the league should not be pushing a political agenda. Others backed the move
AFL boss Gillon McLachlan has stressed the importance of the league’s support for the ‘yes’ campaign
It comes just hours AFL boss Gillon McLachlan, whose pro-gay marriage views are well known, stressed the importance of the league’s support for the ‘yes’ campaign.
‘This is an issue that means a lot to many of our players and many of my employees and a lot of people in the community,’ he told Fox Footy’s AFL 360 program.
‘I think our position is that we need to have a strong statement – even if it was only for our staff – but I think it’s broader than that.
‘People should get out and vote and have their view, but this something that actually talks to a core value of ours which is actual equality.’
He said he was on the record as saying he is ‘strongly yes.’
The National Rugby League, Australian Rugby Union and Cricket Australia are also backing the redefinition of marriage.