Spanish league signs Ibero-American agreement to tackle racism19 December 2014

AnagreementaimingtostrengthentherelationshipbetweenSpain andLatinAmericaonthegroundsofsportandsocialinclusionhasbeensignedbythe SpanishLeagueofProfessionalFootball(LFP),the Ibero-AmericanGeneralSecretary(SEGIB)andthe Ibero-AmericanYouthOrganisation(OIJ).

The agreement comes after a year in which Spanish professional football was hit by a series of discriminatory and violent incidents, including the Dani Alves banana incident and more recently the death of a Deportivo La Coruña supporter following a clash of Atlético Madrid fans.

A LFP statement read: “The aim of this agreement is to develop social inclusive actions and encourage work promoting education through sport and raising awareness of racism, xenophobia and any form of violence in sport.

“These issues are a big problem in our society, and the collaboration of public and football institutions, through this agreement, means that we are committed to promote peaceful coexistence, social inclusion and gender equality as the foundation of our current and future projects, such as the ‘Ibero-American School of Football and Values’.”

Challenging discrimination
In September, the LFP announced a new project to promote positive values and life skills across Ibero-America, an initiative inspired in the league’s project ‘Campus de Fútbol LFP’ and the European Union ‘Campus of Football & Values’.

The programme aims to set a example on how to address issues around youth in vulnerable and risk situations, including social exclusion, violence and discrimination.

Two months after, in November, the league reinforced its commitment to challenge discrimination and violence in Spanish football during an addressing at the first national seminar on security and integrity in football.

At the seminar, the LFP President Javier Tebas stressed the league’s commitment in developing awareness-raising campaigns and to invest in training to eradicate verbal abuse from Spanish football.

Earlier this week, several sporting, media and public entities of the Spanish region of Andalusia also came together to sign a pact that seeks to promote gender balance in sports reporting, eradicate discriminatory reporting and promote women’s and parasport.

Daniel Alves