We must restore trust in Sport says European Parliament resolution on high-level corruption cases within FIFA
Today, the European Parliament voted on a resolution concerning the ongoing FIFA scandal. Julie Ward MEP, who represents the North West of England, sits on the Culture and Education Committee and consistently speaks out in support of human rights across all sectors.
Julie Ward MEP said:
“I welcome the European Parliament resolution voted on today, which my fellow Socialist and Democrat members took a lead on, calling for a greater collaboration between all stakeholders, including public authorities, sports associations, athletes and supporters, to urgently and thoroughly address the issue of corruption. I particularly welcome the emphasis the resolution places on the need to promote education and strengthen preventative actions. I strongly agree that FIFA must implement structural reforms in order to bring about transparency and accountability.
Lastly, the circumstances surrounding the preparation of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar are deeply regrettable. It is estimated that 4,000 people might die before the first ball is even kicked. Sport must remain a vehicle for promoting human rights, not a justification for breaching them. The S&D group recently held a hearing on the issue of Human Rights and Sport identifying a need to highlight the issues at all levels and condemn the abuses that have been taking place.”
Football plays a huge role in our society, linking communities across the world in a shared passion and promoting positive sporting values. The game has the potential to reach out to marginalised communities, improve health and wellbeing and bridge the gap between generations. Both men and women are attracted to the 'beautiful game' and many clubs are doing admirable education and outreach work. Football also makes a big contribution to our economy, providing jobs in the service industries, lucrative careers for the top players and forming an important revenue stream for broadcasters.
It has therefore been deeply disconcerting to witness the FIFA corruption scandal unfold. Integrity is a vital component of the sport. This is why we must restore trust in sporting institutions and fight against all forms of corruption, re-establishing the values of solidarity, peace and social inclusion that the game can engender.