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Statement from Gordon - Response to Blackpool FC Fans Parliament

In response to an article on the Blackpool FC website about their "Fans Parliament" initiative, Gordon has issued the following statement:Headshot.jpg

"I was emailed by the club journalist at Blackpool FC who asked if I might consider taking part in the selection panel for the so called Fans Parliament initiative which the club s owners wished to take forward.

"As the initial indication of how this process would operate was quite scanty , and no further information came forward , I then replied asking for further information and details.

"At no point did I give any commitment to taking part in the selection process. I started from the principle that any such initiative must clearly contribute materially to bridging the gap that has grown up over the past 12 months between the club s owners and
so many of their supporters , and be seen to do so.

"So among the questions I raised was whether the selection process would consider pre 2015-16 season ticket holders as well as current ones, what approaches had been made to the Blackpool Supporters Trust or the Supporters Association to get their views on the proposals and involve them in it , and whether any representatives elected by the 'parliament' who then went to Blackpool FC board would have the same access to documents including financial and management as other members of the Board.

"I said that I raised these points in the spirit of the initiative which my colleague the Shadow Sports Minister Clive Efford put forward earlier this year to involve supporters on Club boards, after an extensive year long consultation with supporters Trusts and groups countrywide.

"Sadly to date I have had no detailed response or assurances on the points I raised, only a brief note from Blackpool FC saying that the process was now well underway.

"Under such circumstances I cannot and will not be taking any part in the process outlined. I hope the apparent failure to adopt an inclusive approach to bridge divides will not be a missed opportunity by the owners at a time when they sorely need one."

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