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Show Racism The Red Card

Tue, 23rd Oct 2007 10:50am

Welcome to Show Racism The Red Card's Fortnight of Action, 16-30 October 2007. Before kick-off this weekend, clubs playing at every Clydesdale Bank Premier League, IRN-BRU Scottish Football League and Scottish Cup tie, will be united in calling for an end to racism in football and in society. Players in 37 European countries are involved in similar events as part of the Football Against Racism in Europe (FARE) network against racism and discrimination.

Show Racism the Red Card would like to thank you for the excellent support the campaign has had since we set up office in Scotland four years ago. That support is producing real results including a significant decrease in the number of incidents of racial abuse reported at Scottish football stadia over the last year. We have heard of many instances where real supporters have turned on racist fans making it clear that they are not welcome at their club. Various Supporters Trusts have also been instrumental in spreading our anti-racism message throughout the game.

In society, racism is sadly on the increase. Scottish Government statistics indicate that there are on average 14 recorded racist incidents a day. The Commission for Racial Equality estimate the true number to be five times this figure. We must all work together to ensure that the mindless minority who engage in racist practices, realise their behaviour is not acceptable in football or in society.

The SFL and its Clubs deplore all forms of racist behaviour. Any racist behaviour will not be tolerated at any fixtures under the jurisdiction of the Scottish Football League. Racist behaviour by fans could result in warnings, fines or points deductions being imposed upon the Clubs that the fans engaging in racist behaviour claim to support.

This year we have developed partnerships with a number of local authorities to deliver educational workshops combined with football coaching sessions in a number of regions. The workshops are delivered by professional footballers and are a very positive method of educating our young people about the negative impact racism has on Scottish society.

Here's a brief outline of what's taking place during the Fortnight of Action this year:

  • Unveiling of Show Racism the Red Card stadium billboards by Stirling Albion F.C. (sponsored by Unison) and Motherwell F.C.
  • Over fifty events taking place in communities nationwide to combat racism in our society (funded by the Scottish Government and Unison), including events at Ayr United F.C., Dundee United F.C., Elgin City F.C., Falkirk F.C., Livingston F.C., and Queen of the South F.C.
  • Show Racism the Red Card actions at SWPL matches.
  • 'Unite Against Racism' actions at all Match Day 3 UEFA Champions League fixtures.
  • Educational workshops in schools across Scotland.

Football is a sport that is followed by people across the world, and football matches should be an enjoyable experience for all, whatever their racial or religious background. We hope you enjoy the game on Saturday and ask you to support the players' action before kick-off. We all have a part to play in showing racism the red card.

If you see or hear racism at any level of football, please report it to stewards or police, and record the complaint at www.theredcardscotland.org. Our web site also includes updates on Fortnight of Action events and more information on the 'Red Card' campaign in Scotland.