London 2012: Q. You see two men holding hands. Do you: a) Panic...

Training scheme for Olympics volunteers about how not to insult visitors to the Games is branded insulting

You're at the Olympic stadium, volunteering at the London Games. Someone complains to you that two men are holding hands. It is making them feel very uncomfortable. What do you do?

Mercifully, the organisers of London 2012 have been considering such questions. The 70,000 volunteers who will work at the Olympics venues this summer have received training on how to deal with this and other such delicate matters as gender, race and disability, in a "diversity and inclusion quiz", which many have branded "pointless", "patronising" and "insulting".

With regard to same-gender handholding, the correct answer, reassuringly, is neither "politely ask the couple to stop holding hands" or "call the person a homophobic idiot". Rather, one should "explain that there is huge diversity of people at the London 2012 Games, which includes gay, lesbian and bisexual couples".

Olympic volunteers, known as "gamesmakers", were given the questions to answer at training sessions that have been taking place in recent weeks at Wembley Arena.

Other questions include how to direct someone to the toilets if you can't tell what gender they are. Answer: direct them to both male and female – and the disabled one too – just to be on the safe side.

"We went in and they told us how lucky we were to be there. How the Games were all about us. There were practically fireworks going off," said one gamesmaker, from Essex. "Then we're doing a questionnaire on how to talk to disabled people. It was a bit silly."

"There's quite a lot to learn," said another attendee, who will be working at the press centre at the Velodrome come July. "But I think I already knew not to call a hijab a scarf."

Others said they had found the whole thing so funny that they got the questions wrong on purpose. Games organisers said the quiz was not primarily to educate people in how to approach diversity, but rather to see how volunteers would respond to such situations.

A spokesman for London 2012 said: "There are many different roles involved and the role plays were to assist volunteers and give them an outline of the whole of the London 2012 event."

What would you do? The questionnaire

Belief

Q. You are chatting to a fellow gamesmaker at the security line. They point out a woman in front of you who is wearing a scarf on her head and remark: "Surely she won't be allowed to wear that in the venue!" What do you say?

a) Ignore the comment and change the subject.

b) Point out that the woman is wearing a hijab, which is a form of Muslim headwear some women choose to wear as part of their faith.

c) Wait until your first shift with the colleague wearing the headscarf and raise your issue in front of them and your fellow team members.

Gender/Gender Identity

Q. A spectator approaches you asking politely where the nearest toilets are. You are not sure if the spectator is male or female. What do you do?

a) Panic – you are not qualified to make this decision. Explain politely that you do not know.

b) Just in case, tell them where the male, female and accessible toilets are.

c) Ask the spectator politely if they are male or female, so that you can direct them appropriately.

Answers: 1)b, 2)b

Sport
Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi during Barcelona training in August
footballPete Jenson co-ghost wrote Suarez’s autobiography and reveals how desperate he's been to return
News
newsMcKamey Manor says 'there is no escape until the tour is completed'
Voices
Hunted: A stag lies dead on Jura, where David Cameron holidays and has himself stalked deer
voicesThe Scotland I know is becoming a playground for the rich
News
people
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Architect Frank Gehry is regarded by many as the most important architect of the modern era
arts + entsGehry has declared that 98 per cent of modern architecture is "s**t"
Money
Welcome to tinsel town: retailers such as Selfridges will be Santa's little helpers this Christmas, working hard to persuade shoppers to stock up on gifts
news
Arts and Entertainment
Soul singer Sam Smith cleared up at the Mobo awards this week
newsSam Smith’s Mobo triumph is just the latest example of a trend
News
Laurence Easeman and Russell Brand
people
Sport
Fans of Dulwich Hamlet FC at their ground Champion Hill
footballFans are rejecting the £2,000 season tickets, officious stewarding, and airline-stadium sponsorship
News
Shami Chakrabarti
people
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch has refused to deny his involvement in the upcoming new Star Wars film
filmBenedict Cumberbatch reignites Star Wars 7 rumours
Sport
football
News
news
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker