• CONCACAF protocol for racist incidents during matches

    CONCACAF FEATURE

    CONCACAF protocol for racist incidents during matches

    Effective as of January 13, 2014

     

    A.    Racist (and discriminatory) behaviour in football stadiums - Guidelines for match officials

    1.      Serious racist incidents – First step: Stop the match

    When the referee becomes aware (in particular if he is informed by the official CONCACAF Match Commissioner through the fourth official) of racist or discriminatory behaviour (especially racist chants, insults and screams, banners, etc.) and if, in his opinion, this racist behaviour is of a strong magnitude and intensity, he shall, in application of Law 5 of the Game, stop the match and ask for an announcement to be made over the public address system (in the languages of both teams and, if relevant, of the host venue) requesting the public to immediately stop such racist behaviour.

    The match may resume only after the announcement has been made.

    2.      Serious racist incidents – Second step: Suspend the match

     If the racist behaviour does not cease once the game has restarted (i.e. step 1 was ineffective) the referee shall suspend the match for a reasonable time period (for example 5 to 10 minutes) and request the teams to go to the dressing rooms. The official CONCACAF Match Commissioner shall, through the fourth official, assist the referee in determining whether the racist behaviour has ceased following step 1.

    During this time period, the referee shall again ask for an announcement to be made over the public address system requesting the public to immediately stop such racist behaviour and warning them that this may even result in the match being abandoned. 

    During this suspension, the referee shall consult with the official CONCACAF Match Commissioner, the CONCACAF security officer where present and the relevant police and stadium security authorities on the possible next steps, in particular the possibility to abandon the match.

    3.      Serious racist incidents – Third step: Abandon the match 

    If the racist behaviour does not cease after the game has restarted (i.e. step 2 was ineffective), the referee shall, as a very last resort, definitively abandon the match. The official CONCACAF Match Commissioner shall, through the fourth official, assist the referee in determining whether the racist behaviour has ceased following step 2.

    However, any decision by the referee to abandon a match in such circumstances shall only be taken after all other possible measures have been implemented and the impact of abandoning the match on the security of the players and the public has been assessed by means of a full and extensive consultation with the official CONCACAF Match Commissioner, the CONCACAF security officer and the relevant police and stadium security authorities. In principle, an abandon of the match is subject to the agreement of all parties involved.

    4.      Disciplinary measures

    Regardless of whether or not the aforementioned third step has been implemented, disciplinary measures (such as fines, ban on playing in a particular stadium, forfeit or others1) shall be imposed by the CONCACAF Disciplinary Committee according to regulations.

    Briefing at organisation meeting

    The referee shall, together with the official CONCACAF Match Commissioner, brief both teams, as well as the relevant police and stadium security authorities, of these steps at the official organisation meeting before the match.

    5.      Entry into force and communication 

    These guidelines were approved by the CONCACAF Executive Committee on XX November in XXX. They enter into force with immediate effect. They are communicated to all concerned referees, official CONCACAF Match Commissioners and CONCACAF security officers, as well as to all CONCACAF member associations.

     

     B.     Racist (and discriminatory) behaviour in football stadiums – Announcements 

    At the organisational meeting before the game, the match delegate should make sure that the announcements in case of racist (and discriminatory) incidents are ready, in the languages of the home and visiting fans, and, if necessary, in English, for the match officials and refereeing team and/or the language of the hosting venue.

    The messages will have to be brief (in particular if they are to be read up to three times in a row in three different languages) and address the fans firmly.

    We suggest the following announcements that can be tailored in consultation with the CONCACAF security officer, the relevant police and stadium security authorities and the CONCACAF Match Commissioner.

    Pre-Game announcement

    Welcome everybody to our football stadium. Please remember that in football there is no place for racism. Enjoy the match.

    First Announcement

    Attention please – This is an important security announcement: 

    Because of racist behaviour amongst spectators which is interfering with the game, the referee has indicated that he may have to suspend the match. 

    Racism in football stadiums will not be tolerated. Please be in no doubt that the game will be suspended, and may be abandoned, if racist behaviour continues amongst spectators.

    Help everyone enjoy the game and say No to racism!

    Thank you.

    Second Announcement

    Attention please – This is an important security announcement: 

    Because of continuing racist behaviour amongst spectators, the match has been suspended for X minutes (5 to 10). The teams will go back to their dressing rooms.

    We remind you once again that racism in football stadiums will not be tolerated. If racist behaviour amongst the crowd continues, then the match will be abandoned and appropriate disciplinary or criminal sanctions will be taken against the spectators and associations / clubs involved.

    We repeat that this match will be abandoned if there is continuing racist behaviour amongst spectators. 

    Thank you.

     

    Third Announcement

    Attention please – This is an important security announcement:

    We regret to inform you that, because of continuing racist behaviour amongst spectators which is interfering with the game, the referee has decided to abandon the match. We repeat: this match has been abandoned. All spectators are now requested to leave the stadium in an orderly fashion.

    In the interests of safety, all spectators are also asked to take their time when leaving the ground and to follow the instructions of the stewards and security personnel.

    Further statements on the consequences of the abandonment of the match will be made by the association / club on its website in the following days.

     


    1 For a first or minor offence, the sanctions of a warning, a fine and/or the playing of a match behind closed doors shall be applied. For reoffenders or for serious incidents, sanctions such as point deductions, expulsion from a competition or relegation should be applied.

     

     The full text of the Protocol for Racist Incidents during Matches is available for download here.  

  • Champions League

Don't miss this on CONCACAF