With voting for the general election due to take place tomorrow we thought it would be helpful to highlight references to the work of SD and our members that have appeared in the major political party manifestos. We appreciate that football and wider sports policy is just part of the considerations for voters and there are people within our movement from all political backgrounds, however we feel we should identify the positions and responses we have seen.
Ahead of the manifestos being published SD contacted the Conservatives, Greens, Labour and Liberal Democrats.
* Give football fans a greater say in how their clubs are run by encouraging the reform of football governance rules to promote engagement between clubs and supporters.
* We will give football supporters the opportunity to have a greater say in how their clubs are run.
* We will legislate for accredited supporters trusts to be able to appoint and remove at least two club directors and to purchase shares when clubs change hands.
* We will review fan participation in sports governance more widely.
* Sporting events must be open and accessible to all. We will push sports authorities to make rapid improvements on access provision for fans with disabilities.
* Labour will ensure the Premier League delivers on its promise to invest 5 per cent of its television rights income into the grassroots game to help the next generation of players and coaches, and to improve facilities and pitches
* Labour will enforce anti-bot legislation and implement the recommendations of the Waterson Review to ensure fair opportunities for fans to buy tickets.
In addition the FSF and SD jointly submitted the following questions to the Conservatives, Labour, Liberal Democrats, Plaid Cymru and Scottish National Party
- Do you believe Government has a role in ensuring football is affordable?
- The Premier League are exploring safe standing and the EFL back a pilot. Would your Government listen to the football industry and fans?
- Bad owners and clubs in crisis - what solutions would your Government introduce? Independent directors on boards? FA reform? Legislative change which gives supporter trusts the right to bid for their club when ownership changes hands?
- What would you do to remove obstacles to fan ownership? Do you support SD's proposal to create a new status in tax law for community owned sports clubs?
- Broadcasters move games at will with no thought for match-going fans. A Private Members Bill submitted by Justin Madders in December 2016 “required local authorities to consider the needs of match going supporters when approving kick off times”. Would your Government act on this issue?
- Premier League broadcast rights for 2016-2019 are worth around £8.3bn. Do you think the Premier League has a responsibility to redistribute this wealth?
- Should Government worry about the success/failure of the national team?
- What policies would you implement to encourage more people to play football and how would you improve grassroots facilities?
- How would you ensure that football is accessible to all and that the game’s governing bodies are reflective of society?
- Do you have any other policies which are relevant to football fans?
We received the following responses
Whatever the result of the election we look forward to working with all parties to deliver our mission to promote good governance in sport and enable the development of sustainable clubs based on supporters involvement and community ownership