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Campaigners hope Cas fine acts as warning.

Byline: Jim van Wijk

KICK It Out, football's equality and inclusion campaign, has welcomed the hefty fine handed to Castleford Tigers for anti-gay chanting, which they hope will act as a stark warning to other sports.

The issue of homophobia has come under the spotlight again after a section of Castleford fans allegedly hurled offensive chants at Crusaders' player Gareth Thomas, who revealed he was gay in December last year.

The Rugby Football League fined the Tigers pounds 40,000, although the club have stated their intention to appeal.

The Football Association have always taken a strong stance against discrimination of any kind, and work in conjunction with the police and the Crown Prosecution Service to pursue prosecutions of many of the offenders.

And Kick It Out hope the RFL's stance will have an impact across the board.

"The RFL decision sends out a very strong message that this sort of behaviour will not be tolerated," a spokesman for Kick It Out said.

"Having a 'safe space' for sportspeople to carry out their work, is crucial.

"It is a little like the incident with Sol Campbell a few years back where the football authorities worked with the police in an equally decisive manner to bring the perpetrators to justice.

"The issue of homophobia is something we have seen a rise of in football."

TONIGHT (7.45 unless stated) World Cup Semi-Final Uruguay v Holland ............................................ (7.30) at Green Point Stadium UEFA Champions League First Qualifying Round Second Leg Birkirkara v Santa Coloma ................................ (5.00)
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Jul 6, 2010
Words:254
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