Webb launches regional anti-racism campaign

| 08/07/2013

293980_heroa.jpg(CNS): Local soccer boss Jeff Webb, the CONCACAF President and Chairman of FIFA’s Anti-Racism and Discrimination Task Force, launched the football body’s new campaign this week ahead of the Gold Cup’s first game at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California. Embrace Diversity is a regional initiative created to provide a strong, recognized, effective and influential voice to promote integration within the football community and society. "We have a special responsibility in the way we can impact football and society," said Webb during his opening remarks at the launch. "CONCACAF has the opportunity to lead the way by implementing its first awareness campaign that supports the basic social principle of integration among cultures, religions, genders and races.

“We need to recognize that we have a great deal to learn about each other and must embrace this opportunity for the evolution of our beautiful game,” he added.

The Embrace Diversity campaign, unveiled before the opening match between Canada and Martinique, will be showcased on field boards throughout each of the competition’s 25 games. By working towards creating an environment of deference that fosters football’s continuous journey to impart positive role models to society, CONCACAF has initiated a long-term crusade to instil values that advocate integration.

“Even though we have come a long way in the pursuit of integration, discrimination still plays an active role as an unfortunate reflection of society within our game,” added General Secretary, Enrique Sanz. “The CONCACAF family is committed to enhancing the benefits of embracing diversity within our region in our quest to eliminate any type of discrimination from our fields. These are the first steps into a broader global mandate led by President Webb.”

Following FIFA Member Associations’ approval of the Anti-Racism and Discrimination resolutions during its 63rd Congress held in Mauritius, the implementation of CONCACAF’s campaign will support the goal of bringing universality to the mechanisms that combat racism and discrimination across all regions. The resolutions proposed by FIFA’s newly-formed task force, led by Webb, were developed to promote equality of rights to all people and eliminate race-based discrimination in every region and every country where football is played through sanction, education and prevention.

"I am extremely pleased that the football family has finally united with a firm stance to provide a strong, effective and influential voice against all forms of racism and discrimination through focusing on education, prevention and sanctions," said Webb. "I am honoured to have been asked to chair this crucial task force."

CONCACAF’s Embrace Diversity campaign was developed as a first step to take action on discrimination concerns raised within the football community in the region. In the future, it may include educational and awareness activities, coalition campaigns, prevention and legislation that can facilitate the referral of concerns around discrimination incidents within football.

“By safeguarding the basic principle of respect amongst all individuals in our stadiums, we hope to contribute to remove discrimination barriers within society,” added Webb. “Ignorance and prejudice are the ill of humanity. We want to make sure that nothing steers the focus away from the game of football.”

Webb was appointed Chairman of FIFA’s Anti-Racism and Discrimination Task Force by President Joseph Blatter in March 1st, 2013, with the directive to oversee all matters related to racism in football.

“Needless to say the challenges are numerous, but creating an environment of cooperation and establishing a clear roadmap to the desired goal will surely advance football’s continuous journey to fostering integration within the football community,” Webb added.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    CIFA needs attention What will he do for the local football product?

  2. Anonymous says:

    With football I think the disrespect for refereees is more a concern

    One only has to look at the brazillian ref who was beheaded last week


    If only it was rugby it might be interesting

  3. Anonymous says:

    We prevent racism by regognizing races and classifying them and making policy around race, so we can identify people or groups via a racial identity to determine whether an act of racisim is in fact happening.

    So in short, we prevent racisim via rasism.

    • Anonymous says:

      Would you prefer the ostrich approach of pretending that racism does not exist and that if we ignore it it will all go away? You cannot address something that you have not identified and defined.  Identifying racism is of course not itself racism. 

  4. "Expat" says:

    May this be a learning exercise and a much needed lesson in tolerance for all of Cayman. Never too late for a shower of rain. Well done Jeff Webb.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Webb, we needmore LGBT players, please. Let's keep it diverse. We also need to make provision for disabled players. We should create some big blue rectangles on the field where no opposition players can roam. Cayman should lead the way internationally and I am sure that our new Governor-designate, Her Excellency, Ms. Helen Kilpatrick will assist ably. I am genuinely tired of the rampant homophobia in these islands and anything we can do to stamp it out should be considered. I support diversity in all walks of life, unless of course you are in a wheelchair and that would be an inappropriate comment, but I am sure you understand.

    • Anonymous says:

      How do you know there are not already plenty of LGBT players?

      Are we going to lower the standards to meet some kind of quota?