Updated: Sep 11
New Equality and Diversity Officer of Montpelier Villa Football Club
Firstly, I want to thank the club for appointing me as the club’s new equality and diversity officer. Diversity is something that I am extremely passionate about and as well as equal opportunities and the removal of systemic barriers for everyone.
Some of you, I have already met since arriving at the club in February but not many of you have realized who I am, and that is because I live my life predominantly in a football kit/tracksuit which is pretty gender-neutral. However, I am a transwoman, transitioned in early 2017 and in 2018 became the first transwoman to play football in the Scottish Women's Football pyramid playing at the Championship level with Stonehaven Ladies FC and Grampian Ladies FC and the top University level in Scotland with Aberdeen Uni. I am now Montpelier’s Women's first-choice goalkeeper and I am very thankful for that opportunity also. Hopefully, we will have great success this season.
As for being passionate about equality and diversity, I believe no one should be treated detrimentally due to any characteristics such as race, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, or anything else. I have tirelessly campaigned for Transgender inclusion in sport, including several interviews with the BBC and even the New York Times in the United States. Most of these document my story in far more detail than I can explain in 500 words and, if interested please see the links below.
Since joining the women's team in February 2020, as well as taking up my Ph.D. studying transgender individuals at the University of Brighton, I have also taken up several other positions within the club. I am currently occupying the positions of head of sports science, assistant academy director, U12 boys lead coach as well as a lead coach on many VYD projects for underprivileged populations.
During my time here and in our attempts to drive the club forward, the club’s hierarchy and I both agreed and identified that a new approach was needed to focus and channel our attempts to end racism, tackle homophobia, tackle transphobia, and/or any other forms of discrimination head-on.
Montpelier Villa is a club for EVERYONE, just as football is a sport for EVERYONE.
I look forward to making this club a frontrunner in the fight for equality and diversity.
Yours in football,
Blair R. Hamilton 1-3,
1 Collaborating Centre of Sports Medicine, University of Brighton, Eastbourne, UK
2 Centre for Stress and Age-related Disease, University of Brighton, Brighton, UK
3 The Gender Identity Clinic Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK
Slice of Life : https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p073z6bl