Academics: sectarianism in Scotland goes beyond football and is 'not limited to the West'

Sectarianism in Scotland goes beyond football matches and working class west coast communities, academics have told MSPs.

Loading Comments
Academics say sectarianism goes beyond football.
Academics say sectarianism goes beyond football.

Members of an advisory group set up by the Scottish Government to look at the issue say it needs to be tackled with the same conviction as racism and homophobia.

They were giving evidence on their report, published at the end of last year, to Holyrood's Equal Opportunities Committee.

The Advisory Group on Tackling Sectarianism in Scotland was set up by Community Safety Minister Roseanna Cunningham to look at ways to address the problem of sectarianism in Scottish society.

Dr Duncan Morrow, chair of the group, told the committee that while sectarianism has religious origins from which it cannot be separated, it is not "the whole story".

"With some people there is a tendency to think this is limited to the 90 minutes bigotry idea and working class people in the west of Scotland.

"It certainly is true that at football matches in the west of Scotland it takes on a very aggressive face, nobody is doubting that.

"On the other side, to limit it to that and to simply say that's all that it is and it comes from nowhere else, and it stops at that point, is for us not real and does not reflect reality."

Recommendations made by the group include strong civic leadership on the issue, funding from governing bodies and football clubs to tackle sectarianism in grassroots football, and action from local authorities to ensure there is a balance between the right to march and the right of communities to go about their business in peace.

It has also called for further research into the impact of sectarianism in Scotland, including the monitoring of sectarian attitudes and activity.

Local government

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on Evening Times on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis. If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.


Have you got a story?

Contact the news desk on 0141 302 6520 or email
A weekly round up of social highlights

A weekly round up of social highlights

Cat's Eyes on Glasgow

The Glaswegian who makes music for the movies, hot dogs at Kitty O’Shea’s washed down with a visit to the Juice Gardens

Times Out



TV Advert
Gail’s Gab

Gail’s Gab

Gail Sheridan is a mother-of-one and wife to Tommy and she likes to get political with the hot topic of the week in her column Gail’s Gab.

Michelle McManus

Michelle McManus

Sussed in the City

I laughed at viewers saying Broadchurch’s Tennant is too Scottish, are some people too lazy to listen?

Janice Bell

Janice Bell

You couldn’t make up half the stuff that happens to PA Janice Bell- some of the jams she gets herself into are worth a story or two.