FAI Chief Executive, John Delaney announced the appointment of a new Intercultural Programme Co-ordinator, responsible for coordinating the development of an anti-racism and social inclusion strategy at the association’s AGM.
Des Tomlinson will develop policies and procedures to involve ethnic minorities in the game at all levels. His appointment by the FAI is the first of its kind by a major National Governing Body in Ireland.
Des will support the strategy of the FAI Intercultural Group which has Show Racism the Red Card, Sari, NCCRI and the Department of Justice as partner agencies involved. The strategy of the group is to devise ways of increasing minority ehtnic participation in all aspects of Irish football.
Mr. Delaney spoke of the FAI¹s new Intercultural Football Programme, “The FAI¹s involvement with the many non-Irish nationals has been brought to a new level. The objective of this appointment, working with other agencies including the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform and the National Consultation Committee on Racial Integration (NCCRI) is to co-ordinate and facilitate the creation of a strategy for the development of opportunities for participation in football and to prevent the spread of racism in football in this country.”
Mr. Delaney said one of the highlights of the year was the appointment of 14 new Development Officers through the joint FAI/Local Authority football development initiative.
“The new community/development officers are making a real difference, particularly in underprivileged areas as they implement football programmes while working with the community tackling the issues of social exclusion and integration”, Delaney said.
The Show Racism the Red Card website will feature an interview with Des shortly when he is settled into the job.