Black leaders tackle Liverpool on Suarez

 

Liverpool have been told by a group of local and national black leaders that they should issue an unreserved apology to Manchester United's Patrice Evra, having contributed to the "incitement of racism in football and the wider society" with their reluctant acceptance of Luis Suarez's punishment for using a racially derogatory term to Evra.

Suarez has never apologised directly to Evra and a revealing sense of how the controversy has provided an excuse for the racist minority to air their vitriol publicly was provided last week by youth worker and Liverpool FC scout Earl Jenkins. Now, in an open letter to the club and manager Kenny Dalglish, whose insistence that Suarez take a penalty in front of the Kop against Brighton on Sunday seemed a gesture of solidarity, the group have told Liverpool to accept publicly the findings of the FA-appointed independent regulatory commission once and for all. They are yet to offer such a comment.

Gloria Hyatt, who leads the group, said: "Liverpool FC has presided over the worst incident of racism in football seen in recent years. Their misguided handling of the ... saga has let down all of those in the city who work hard to challenge racism and to make Liverpool a better place to live for everyone."

Lee Jasper, the activist who was equality adviser to the Ken Livingstone during his time as Mayor of London, said: "The club, including the owners, the players and the manager need to realise the enormous damage caused by their reluctance and obdurate behaviour. Kenny Dalglish used to manage Celtic. He ought to know the importance of stamping out bigotry. The club failed the city, the nation as a whole, and Britain's black communities. Their abysmal lack of leadership on these issues has given a green light to racism. They must make urgent reparations ... and a clear and unequivocal apology."

The group's open letter says racism in football calls for "unambiguous anti-racist leadership" but that Liverpool's actions "fell short of the high standard of leadership expected for a team of their standing." The group has called for Liverpool, in partnership with ethnic minority organisations, to sponsor an international conference on the issue of eradicating racism in football.

Jenkins described how the Suarez affair had affectedhis Liverpool-supporting nephew for last week's Anfield Wrap podcast. "[He] doesn't want to go [to games] any more because for the first time he has seen our supporters racially abusing opposition players. He is scared to go." The abuse had occurred "two or three weeks ago" during an away match, Jenkins said. "[Racists] have felt comfortable saying that. They didn't before."

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most
Katy Perry prevented from buying California convent for $14.5m after nuns sell to local businesswoman instead

No grace of God for Katy Perry as sisters act to stop her buying convent

Archdiocese sues nuns who turned down star’s $14.5m because they don’t approve of her
Ajmer: The ancient Indian metropolis chosen to be a 'smart city' where residents would just be happy to have power and running water

Residents just want water and power in a city chosen to be a ‘smart’ metropolis

The Indian Government has launched an ambitious plan to transform 100 of its crumbling cities
Michael Fassbender in 'Macbeth': The Scottish play on film, from Welles to Cheggers

Something wicked?

Films of Macbeth don’t always end well - just ask Orson Welles... and Keith Chegwin
10 best sun creams for body

10 best sun creams for body

Make sure you’re protected from head to toe in the heatwave
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon files

Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games
Women's World Cup 2015: How England's semi-final success could do wonders for both sexes

There is more than a shiny trophy to be won by England’s World Cup women

The success of the decidedly non-famous females wearing the Three Lions could do wonders for a ‘man’s game’ riddled with cynicism and greed
How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map