20.05.2010 - UNESCO Social and Human Sciences

UNESCO/FC Barcelona partnership: European cities put racism and discrimination offside

On the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (21 March 2010), UNESCO, in close partnership with the FC Barcelona, launched the anti-racism campaign entitled “Putting Racism Offside”. Today, echoing this campaign, Graz (Austria), Nancy and Dunkirk (France), three member cities of the European Coalition of Cities against Racism (ECCAR), are organizing activities associating sport and the fight against discrimination.

The city of Dunkirk has started the ball rolling by hosting an exhibition from 16 May to 6 June 2010, in cooperation with the local chapter of the International League against Racism and Anti-Semitism (LICRA). “Des Noirs dans les Bleus” tells the history of black players in the French national soccer team over the years. This exhibition aims to raise awareness and stimulate a debate on the issue of racial discrimination in sports and how it is reflected in society.

The city of Nancy will address the issue of discrimination in sport through the “Teaming against Discriminations” campaign. Numerous activities are foreseen, including a screening of the movie “Invictus” and a number of sporting events promoting “better living together”. The campaign will be launched with a conference on discrimination in sport on 22 May 2010. Many political, sporting and academic figures will participate. It is hoped, as a result of the conference, that a charter on the principles of good conduct will be adopted, which will be proposed, among others, to local sport clubs.

Taking up the torch, the city of Graz, in association with partners in Austria, will organize on 19 June 2010 a soccer tournament for youth from all walks of life, within the framework of the “Go4Diversity” project, supported by the Austrian Commission for UNESCO. This tournament aims at creating intercultural encounters between young people from various backgrounds in an environment conducive to mutual enrichment.

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