The FA has launched the Football Leadership Diversity Code, a new initiative to drive diversity and inclusion across English football.

The Code, which has been developed alongside Kick It Out and others in the game, aims to ensure that the support structures off the pitch better reflect the diversity we see on it.

With over 40 clubs already signed up across both the men’s and women’s games, the Code sets a clear direction for promoting inclusivity within the game.

At Kick It Out we will be encouraging fans and sponsors to ask their clubs to sign up to the Code, and supporting its development as it expands more broadly over time. 

We have been campaigning for greater diversity in football for over 27 years, and we are excited to see how this new Code will tackle the inequality seen across senior leadership positions, broader team operations and coaching roles. 

On the launch of the Code, Sanjay Bhandari, Kick It Out Chair, says:

"We welcome the Football Leadership Diversity Code, published today by The FA. It shows what football can achieve when we work as a team. 

I applaud all the clubs and individuals who participated in this massive joint effort over the last three months and those who have immediately signed up to the Code. 

The Code is a clear signal of intent and sets the future direction for building a more inclusive game. It has the potential to transform the way that people get in, stay in and get on in the football industry, so that it is more representative of the people who play and watch the game. 

Together we can rewrite the book on how people succeed in coaching and leadership in the game. 

However, the Code only represents the end of Chapter One of that book. There is more work to be done. 

At Kick It Out, we will be asking fans and sponsors to encourage their clubs to sign up to the Code. We will be seeking to provide the reporting transparency that tracks how football is progressing against these targets in the coming years. We will also work with the industry to ensure that the diverse pipeline of talent is better connected to opportunities. We know that talent is evenly distributed, but opportunity is not. We need to correct that imbalance."

The Code comes at a time when the football community has come together to challenge injustices in society. This includes our recent Take A Stand campaign, which is challenging everyone across the football community to take an action or make a public pledge in the fight against discrimination.

Find out more about Take A Stand, check out the story here or join the conversation on social media with #TakeAStand.