The U.S. Soccer Board of Directors voted yesterday to repeal Policy 604-1, which required our players to stand during the national anthem.— U.S. Soccer WNT (@USWNT) June 11, 2020
Black Lives Matter.
We can do more and we will. pic.twitter.com/t86BOgCqAm
U.S. Soccer affirms Black Lives Matter, and we support the fight against racial injustices.
The U.S. Soccer Board of Directors voted yesterday afternoon to repeal Policy 604-1, which required our players to stand during the national anthem. The policy was put in place after Megan Rapinoe kneeled in solidarity with the peaceful protest inspired by Colin Kaepernick, who was protesting police brutality, and the systematic oppression of Black people and people of color in America. It has become clear that this policy was wrong and detracted from the important message of Black Lives Matter.
We have not done enough to listen – especially to our players – to understand and acknowledge the very real and meaningful experiences of Black and other minority communities in our country. We apologize to our players – especially our Black players – staff, fans, and all who support eradicating racism. Sports are a powerful platform for good, and we have not used our platform as effectively as we should have. We can do more on these specific issues and we will.
It should be, and will be going forward, up to our players to determine how they can best use their platforms to fight all forms of racism, discrimination, and inequality. We are here for our players and are ready to support them in elevating their efforts to achieve social justice. We cannot change the past, but we can make a difference in the future. We are committed to this change effort, and we will be implementing supporting actions in the near future.
The vote to repeal US Soccer's anthem policy was NOT unanimous, and came after the board heard from three members of US NTs in Tuesday's conference call. I'm told not all of those players spoke in favor of repeal, which is refreshing. People don't agree on this issue.— Andrew Das (@AndrewDasNYT) June 10, 2020
- The rule requiring players to stand was implemented after Megan Rapinoe knelt in support of Colin Kaepernick in 2016.
- Before implementing the rule Rapinoe knelt multiple times during the anthem (first for her club team then the national team), she was subsequently left off multiple rosters with no real explanation as to why.
- Once US Soccer implemented Policy 604-1, Rapinoe was called back up. She didn't kneel again but also didn't sing the anthem or put her hand on her chest.
- They repealed the policy yesterday. It wasn't a unanimous decision.
- 1 player from each of the 3 national teams (Womens, Mens, Para) were on the call and at least 1 of them argued the policy should be kept.
SOURCES: 1, 2