NZ Rugby ‘still has miles to go’ despite Pride float

Morning Talk 02/02/2018
Photo: Getty.

For the first time ever, New Zealand Rugby (NZR) will have its own float in the Auckland Pride Parade on Feb 17.

After the NZR general manager joined the Pride Parade last year, he says he couldn’t wait to get his organisation involved.

NZ general manager Neil Sorenson joined Mark Sainsbury on Morning Talk to discuss with on how New Zealand’s most popular sport has chosen to support the LGBTQ+ community. 

“We’ve all got secrets,” he told RadioLIVE. “But not being able to be yourself in terms of sharing your own sexuality must be just absolutely crap.”

We still have miles to go, don’t we?

Mark Sainsbury asked whether an All Black could be openly gay given today’s attitudes and political climate.

“I think it will be a challenge for the pioneers – those guys would have to be quite brave.

“Not because they’ll get a lot of ridicule or anything. It’s just they’ll get a hell of a lot of attention,” he said. “And probably a hell of a lot of love.”

Two years ago, NZ Rugby CEO Steve Tew told Newshub the All Blacks were ready for an openly gay player and last year, it became the first national sports organisation to be awarded the Rainbow Tick - a signifier of diversity and inclusivity.

“We still have miles to go, don’t we?” said Mr Sorenson.

Listen to the full interview with Neil Sorenson above.

Morning Talk with Mark Sainsbury, weekdays from 9am-noon on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the ROVA app on Android and iPhone.