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Trust Offers its Support to Proposed WFC Disabled Supporters Association

Thursday 2nd November 2017

Trust Secretary Steve Davies and Trust Member Daz Anslow attended a meeting at the Banks's Stadium Priory Lounge last night (Wednesday 1st November) which was hosted by Walsall FC Disability Liaison Officer Laura Greenhouse and presided by Level Playing Field Projects Coordinator Kieran Reynolds and Development Officer Owain Davies.

Also in attendance was Walsall FC Safety Officer Jim O'Grady and Disabled Supporter Steward Dave Collins amongst a small number of disabled WFC supporters and care assistants.

The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the possibility of forming a Disabled Supporters Association (DSA) at Walsall which would run independently from, but liaise closely with, the club and Level Playing Field, the national campaigning and advisory organisation for disabled sports fans to represent the voice, needs and requirements of disabled supporters in attendance at the Banks's Stadium and where possible, provide relevant information to disabled supporters wishing to travel to away games, helping to improve their overall match day experience.

LPF Projects Coordinator Kieran Reynolds gave a short introduction to LPF and explained how a DSA would be beneficial to disabled supporters at WFC, not only in relation to match day experience, but also as a way of boosting confidence and interacting more within the community. This was followed by an informal discussion regarding a number of personal experiences which have occurred when travelling to away game in particular.

At one point during the meeting, it was suggested by one of the attendees that a DSA may actually help to alienate disabled supporters more instead of making them feel integrated at which point LPF Development Officer Owain Davies explained to the meeting that this has not been the case at other clubs where a DSA has been formed. DSA's at Aston Villa and Manchester United were mentioned in particular as groups which have quickly established themselves successfully with many disabled supporters getting involved.

Trust Secretary Steve Davies offered the services of the Trust and its website and social media profiles as an outlet for the proposed DSA to use until they establish themselves and beyond if they so wish and also agreed to liaise with the DSA, the club and LPF, offering to raise any concerns or suggestions raised by the DSA at any future Working Party Meetings at the Banks's Stadium.

It as agreed that a small number of those in attendance at last nights meeting would reconvene at a later date to form a steering group to enable the launch of a DSA at Walsall, details of which will be posted on our website as and when they become available.

For further information or to register your interest in getting involved, please contact Laura Greenhouse via email to laura.greenhouse@walsallfc.co.uk.

For more information on DSA's, Level Playing Field and the work they do, please visit their website at http://www.levelplayingfield.org.uk

 

 
 

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Walsall Football Supporters' Trust is the trading name of Walsall Supporters Society Limited which is registered in England and Wales as a Co-operative and Community Benefit Society (Registration No. IP30010R) and regulated by (with the guidance of Supporters Direct) the Financial Conduct Authority.

 

 

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