The erasure of marginalized people, especially LGBTQ+ people, is commonplace in sport. As sport has become more commercialized, even at grassroots and youth levels), one group that has become even further marginalized and dehumanized are sports officials. Understanding the intersection of marginalized identities is important; as such, this study examined how homophobia and transphobia interplay with the sports officiating profession. Semistructured interviews with 16 self-identified LGBTQ+ referees revealed a series of organizational and social factors that led officials to either pass as non-LGBTQ+ or to come out as LGBTQ+, leading to the development of the LGBTQ+ Referee Identity Management Process Model. Implications for better supporting LGBTQ+ officials to promote higher levels of retention and career satisfaction are presented.
Baeth, A. C., Tingle, J. K., Jacobs, B. L., & Zvosec, C. C. (2023). "It was my story to tell and I wasn't ready to tell it": Stigma management amongst LGBTQ+ sport officials. Journal of Sport and Social Issues, 47(3), 228-255. https://doi.org/10.1177/01937235231171368
Journal of Sport and Social Issues