What's With The Shirts | Part 2
The story behind our Everyone is Welcome Here staff shirts.
In 2017, we shook up the tournament scene with our Future is Female staff shirts. By overwhelming request, this design made its way to the VC online store and became one of our most popular shirts ever, helping support our efforts to make equitable investments in our community.
While we completely stand behind the equitable call-to-action of "the future is female", our learnings over the next few years lead us to determine that the future of VC is non-binary. Since the clothing worn by the VC team in our tournament shops is an effective way to spread our values to the world, we designed our next batch of tournament staff shirts reflecting our new ideals.
While we're on the subject of inclusivity, have you ever noticed the large banners hanging in every VC tournament tent, stating that Everyone is Welcome Here?
VC's friend Kellan Gibboney standing proudly next to this banner at USA Ultimate's US Open Championships in August 2019.
We love the message behind this banner, and it's the first one we put up at every event. During the Canadian Ultimate Championships, something happened – someone, either attending the tournament or from the public (the event took place in a public park), defaced the banner and wrote "not" in the statement "love is love".
We immediately covered the "not" up with tape, which was ripped off later that day. Hurt, confused, and mildly deflated, our team debated how this could have happened? Who, in our community, could be so close-minded and hurtful? We agreed that it didn't matter – because focusing on this negativity doesn't make the world a more inclusive place. We're stronger and smarter than that!
Fast forward to our next events a couple of months later... featuring our new Everyone is Welcome staff shirts! Our inclusivity message is now available to all in both english and french, as well as on a disc!
Haters can try to cover up our message, but we'll strive to always find a bigger and bolder way to get it out there, and to make our entire community feel safe and welcome wherever we are.
Read more about our Pride 365 mentality in our Equity blog section.