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Opinion: Equality is at heart of new Hammers group

PUBLISHED: 08:30 02 February 2020

Lee Vehit is chairman of BAME Hammers, a new West Ham fan group

Lee Vehit is chairman of BAME Hammers, a new West Ham fan group

BAME Hammers

BAME Hammers is a new West Ham United fans group giving a collective voice to all Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic supporters, which officially launched earlier in January.

We will, as a group, sit alongside Pride of Irons, Any Old Irons, the Junior Supporters' Board and the Disabled Supporters' Board on the Official Supporters' Board of West Ham United.

I'm under the impression that there is nothing quite like what we're trying to achieve here with the BAME Hammers.

I know there are diversity and equality groups throughout the country affiliated to football clubs, but I don't think there is a particular group that is as broad as us.

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BAME Hammers is all about breaking barriers. We don't want the group to be specifically about race, we want it to be broad, because ultimately I want to sit in a room with people that traditionally might have had conflict with each other, might've had difference of opinion, but under the banner of BAME Hammers, we have a common goal to discuss something that we can all agree on.

This is probably our biggest thing. Under BAME Hammers we want to create a group which promotes our similarities rather than our difference. When you get together, you see that there's no difference between a white West Ham fan brought up in Plaistow or Canning Town, to a BAME supporter brought up in Green Street.

Culturally, they are different, yes, but we share a common passion which is West Ham.

Aims and objectives wise, we want to be able to tie into the club's equality work that's currently being undertaken, and be a conduit for discussion with BAME supporters across the club, complementing the club's commitment to place equality, diversity and inclusion at the heart of everything it does.

Having a particular supporters' group that is incredibly diverse already puts the club in a really good position to be able to speak to us, get some opinion on what is happening, and that's really important.

If you want to become a member, please do get in touch - our twitter handle is @BAMEHammers

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