Statement – Taking the Knee

CUOSC would like to echo the words from the Football Supporters Association (FSA) on the back of the disappointing behaviour by some supporters present in the grounds at both Colchester and Millwall over the weekend.

The FSA statement reads:

‘The FSA reaffirms our clear and unequivocal opposition to racism and all forms of discrimination.

We believe that football must offer a welcoming environment where every member of our communities can feel comfortable and valued, and we have welcomed and supported all initiatives in this direction, in particular ‘taking the knee’ by players as their own demonstration of solidarity with those suffering racism and discrimination.

Regardless of the stated intentions of some of those booing the players at Millwall and elsewhere this weekend, the impact of that booing has undermined the anti-racist stance and created a much less welcoming atmosphere in the ground; it has had a racist impact.

The FSA will continue to work with our partners at Kick It Out, with others in football, and particularly with supporters up and down the country to combat racism and discrimination.

The Football Supporters Association’

CUOSC also commend the words of Colchester Chair Robbie Cowling, who has unequivocally stated that supporters should support the players and officials who wish to show support for the cause to ‘highlight that all lives should be valued and should not be treated inhumanly or inferior to others just because of their race.’

CUOSC support all the great work undertaken by Kick it Out and the Football Supporters Association, particularly via their ‘Fans For Diversity Guidance Group’, headed up by Anwar Uddin (Twitter @AnwarU01). We also echo the personal thoughts of Kick It Out Chair Sanjay Bhandari (Twitter @sanjaykickitout) who stated that he was ‘saddened’ but unfortunately ‘not shocked’ at the events at Millwall and stated that Kick It Out will continue to work with the many good people at Millwall FC both at the club and within the supporter base, to eradicate racism.

And finally, we would like to thank all 2000 Carlisle United Supporters who attended the home game with Salford City last Wednesday for their positive and supportive response to being able to attend Brunton Park again, where all social distancing requirements were adhered to and the atmosphere was friendly and welcoming.

In the words of the masks give out to supporters at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Sunday ‘Bring Back Fans, Not Racists.’