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Homophobia and bullying: Why Israel Folau’s Instagram post harms kids
Erik Denison, Lead Researcher - Sport Inclusion Project
Contact details: +61 400 996 560 or firstname.lastname@example.org
“Despite Israel Folau's claims he cares about gay people, and knows their suffering, his Instagram post has without doubt harmed young people.
It has broken the spirits of many girls and boys who idolised him, while, at the same time emboldened the homophobic bullies who target these young people.
Instead of helping to stop the bullying of gay kids, Folau is essentially passing a stone to the bullies and online trolls that they can then throw at these children.
Read the full article by Erik Denison at Monash Lens
The harm to LGB youth from being the target of homophobic slurs in any environment is clear: they are twice as likely to attempt suicide. Overall, LGB youth are more than four times more likely to attempt suicide than their peers. Many LGB youth, particularly males, also avoid sport or try to hid their sexuality from teammates due to fears of rejection.
In our research, teenage rugby players who described themselves as ‘highly’ religious were significantly more likely to use homophobic slurs with teammates and also agree with statements such as ‘gay men are disgusting’.”
Read more commentary by Erik Denison at Monash Len’s.
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