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FARE in call for action week against racism

This is a story from the FSF archive – the FSF and SD merged to become the FSA in 2019.

Football Against Racism in Europe (FARE) are calling for fans across Europe to get involved in the 11th annual FARE Action Week against racism and discrimination in football. The initiative, which actually runs from 14th to 26th October, is calling on individuals and organisations alike to get involved.

FARE are looking to supporters groups, large and small, for any ideas, initiatives or activities that can help spread the word of anti-discrimination throughout the game. Uefa are lending their backing to the campaign, which coincides with fixtures in the Champions and Europa League.

Grants of up to €400 are available for campaigning materials (be they t-shirts, banners, fanzines or flyers) and fans should get in touch with FARE, or see their website for more information.

Despite the strides made in tackling racism and discrimination from the game in this country (players and fans from the professional ranks down the park pitches are becoming more and more diverse), we can not rest on our laurels and think that discrimination has been eradicated completely.

For fans and players in many European countries, overt racism is still a daily reality, and as the recent furore over Lokomotiv Moscow fans’ racist ‘farewell banner’ to West Brom signing Peter Odemwingie shows, there is still a lot of work to be done.

The explanation of the head of the Russian 2018 World Cup bid (trying to pass off the banner as referencing some archaic Soviet slang – ‘to get a banana’ meant ‘to fail a test’, apparently) was widely derided. FARE’s executive director, Piara Powar, called the banner ‘clearly racist in context…to suggest otherwise is a nonsense’.

The battle against racism, though, is not over. Huge credit should go to the West Brom supporters for their classy response, demonstrating that fans can come together and show strength in numbers against racism on the terraces – precisely the sort of message that FARE’s Action Week is trying to get across.

Ignoring racism is accepting racism – take a stand and join in the FARE Action Week today.

Join the FSF for free today from this link.

The Football Supporters’ Federation on Facebook.

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