The union will move to educate supporters about the song
England will not ban ‘Swing Low’ from Twickenham
England fans will not be banned from singing Swing Low, Sweet Chariot when they eventually return to Twickenham.
It was announced by the Rugby Football Union that they will use social media to educate supporters in addition to “providing platforms for diverse voices across the game”. It is also understood that the lyrics will no longer be shown on screens around the stadium on a matchday and the union has stopped selling merchandise that references the song.
In June, the RFU said they would review the song’s use because of its historic links to slavery.
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Andy Cosslett, the union’s chair, said: “The RFU needs to step up its efforts to improve diversity and inclusion across our game. We are living through testing times, but this will not deter us from grasping the opportunity to better reflect the society we live in.
“We have worked hard to understand our starting point and are now under way with a plan that we are confident will produce big improvements in our diversity and inclusion over the next few years.
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“Rugby union has always prided itself as being a ‘game for all’… we must now demonstrate beyond any doubt that we mean it.”
It is understood that the RFU has also given the men’s and women’s national teams blessing to kneel before their upcoming fixtures, in support of Black Lives Matter movement. Furthermore, they say they are committed to having two black, Asian and minority ethnic members on its board – currently of 14 people – by 2022 and ensuring it has at least 30% female representation.
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