As the debate over racism in football continues, European football’s governing body, UEFA, is to renew its anti-racism partnership with the FARE Network during a special event staged at Highbury Stadium on Wednesday 9 March 2005.
A financial donation of 400,000 Euros will be presented to campaigners by Arsenal FC’s vice-chairman, David Dein, and UEFA’s Director of Communication, William Gaillard, prior to the kick-off at Arsenal’s UEFA Champions League clash with FC Bayern München.
The donation comes at a time when high-profile cases of racist behaviour have reignited concerns about the problem across the continent. FARE will use the funds to support campaigning and educational activities in areas such as Southern and Eastern Europe.
Piara Powar, Director of FARE partner Kick It Out, said,
“We have seen in recent months just how crucial grassroots campaigns against racism are to the future of the game. In some parts of Europe the problem is being ignored. Against this background, the support of European football’s governing body is essential to ensuring that the message is heard loud and clear across the continent and that effective action is taken.”
William Gaillard, UEFA’s Director of Communications, commented,
“UEFA will not tolerate racism in our sport, and will not rest until racist attitudes have disappeared from both the field of play and the stadium. UEFA shares the outrage created by the recent incidents of racist behaviour in football.”
Gaillard went on to describe the vital role FARE plays in UEFA’s fight against racism,
“We recognise the need to be working alongside those who have specialist knowledge and understand the problems. We will continue to give leadership to make sure the problem is foremost in the minds of European football. Much still needs to be done but our determination is clear.”