September 27-29, 2023 | Pittsburgh, PA
2023 Summit Dates Announced!
September 27-29, 2023
Sports Working Group
Uniting the global convening power of the United Nations and the urgent call to action of the Eradicate Hate Global Summit Sports Working Group members with their practical expertise, to establish the UN & Eradicate Hate Global Summit Sports Working Group. The Sports Working Group will deploy the powerful voices of sport to foster acceptance, mutual respect and counter hate speech around the world.
The Game Plan
The UN & Eradicate Hate Global Summit Sports Working Group has developed the Plan of Action for Sports: The Game Plan, which will focus not just on identifying and reporting hate speech, but on positive reactions that everyday people and famous athletes have taken (or are committing to take) to counter it.
The Game Plan is outlined by the acronym SPORT:
- Speak openly and honestly about hate speech with athletes, employees, the public, and those who are targeted by hate speech;
- Promote positive messages, practices, polices, and procedures to foster genuine respect and counter hate speech;
- Organize specific outreach to communities of fans (from back yards to stadiums) to educate them about hate speech and its consequences and to try to intervene before violence and messages of hate that may lead to incitement of violence can take root;
- Recognize, reward, and report success stories and positive impacts that athletes and sports figures who join the Game Plan; and
- Train at all levels to identify and address hate speech.
Sports Working Group Members
The UN & Eradicate Hate Global Summit Sports Working Group includes a multitude of sport leagues from around the globe and its membership will continue to expand. Some of the key members of the Sports Working Group include:
Sports Working Group
Interview with ALICE NDERITU, Special Advisor, Alice Wairimu Nderitu, the United Nations Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and a member of the Sports Working Group.
Interview with MICHELE ROSENTHAL, Co-Chair, Eradicate Hate Global Summit Sports Working Group, member of the Eradicate Hate Global Summit Executive.
The World of Sport: Global Communication of an Anti-Hate Message
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the UN & Eradicate Hate Global Summit Sports Working Group?
It is a collaborative effort between the United Nations Office on Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect and the Eradicate Hate Global Summit aimed at exploring how to most effectively use the international love of sports teams and their athletes to counter the growing global proliferation of hate speech and by extension, extremism and hate-fueled violence.
Everyone knows about the U.N., but what is the Eradicate Hate Global Summit?
Eradicate Hate Global Summit is based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where the deadliest anti-Semitic attack in U.S. history occurred in 2018 at the Tree of Life Synagogue. A heavily-armed gunman killed 11 worshipers. Several others, including a responding police officer were seriously wounded. In response, the community created an annual global summit that brings together leaders from government, academia, law, the non-profit sector, corporations, and journalism. The Eradicate Hate Global Summit is oriented toward finding effective solutions to hate-fueled extremism by forming year-round working groups that inform each subsequent
annual Summit gathering.
Why the emphasis on sports to tackle this problem?
People around the world cheer on their favorite athletes and teams with incredible fervor. That fan loyalty and dedication imbues sports teams and athletes with a unique ability to shape viewpoints and to serve as global exemplars of the power of embracing diversity to counter hate speech. At a more basic community level, young people across the world engage in organized youth sports and less formal recreational sports, often imitating their favorite professional athlete or team. Around the globe, the power of sport can play a powerful role to counter hate, a cause that has never been more important than it is now.
Specifically, how did the UN & Eradicate Hate Global Summit Sports Working Group come about?
It was proposed by keynote speaker at the 2021 Eradicate Hate Global Summit. Alice Wairimu Nderitu, the U.N. Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, proposed that the Summit and the U.N. work together to form an action plan for sports organizations and fans to reduce hate speech, based on the UN Strategy and Plan of Action on Hate Speech. See interview here.
Who are the members of the UN & Eradicate Hate Global Summit Sports Working Group?
- Laura Ellsworth, Co-Chair of the Eradicate Hate Global Summit.
- Michele Rosenthal, a member of the Eradicate Hate Global Summit Executive Committee and the former head of Community Affairs for the Pittsburgh Steelers NFL team.
- At the 2022 Eradicate Hate Global Summit, Ms. Rosenthal told a video interviewer about initial acceptance of the initiative.
- Some of the members of the Sports Working Group include:
- Major League Baseball (MLB)
- Major League Soccer (MLS)
- National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR)
- National Basketball Association (NBA)
- National Football League (NFL)
- National Hockey League (NHL)
- Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA)
- U.S. Soccer Federation, USWNT
What is the Sports Working Group’s strategy to advance its goals?
The team’s “Game Plan” is embodied in the acronym SPORT:
- Speak openly and honestly about hate speech with athletes, employees, the public and those who are targeted by hate speech.
- Promote positive message practices policies and procedures to foster genuine respect and counter hate speech.
- Organize specific outreach to communities of fans and players (from backyards to stadiums) to educate them about hate speech and its consequences in an effort to intervene before violence and message of hate that may lead to incitement of violence can take root.
- Recognize, reward and report success stories and positive impacts of athletes and sports figures.
- Train at all levels to identify and address hate speech.
How will the UN & Eradicate Hate Global Summit Sports Working Group gauge success?
The Game Plan will focus not just on identifying and reporting hate speech, but on positive reactions that everyday people and famous athletes have taken (or are committing to take) to counter it. The Game Plan will bring an identifiable brand, and further serve as a statement of unity — specifically, that we should embrace our differences, which are too often the targets of hate speech and instead focus on what brings the global sports community together—a love of the game.
The effort to eradicate hate requires the active participation of every component of our society, to include governments, the private sector, communities of faith and indeed every aspect of civil society. There is no more urgent task in front of us. The organizers of the Eradicate Hate Global Summit are doing the United States and the world an enormous service by tackling hatred and extremism with a focus on honest dialogue and conversation, genuine learning and practical solutions. This will not happen overnight, but the Pittsburgh community’s leadership in this effort is genuinely inspiring and motivating.
The Summit was more than empty words - it made clear that a solution-driven approach is the only way to fight hate. That's why the working group activities, which are results driven are going to be critical in defeating violent extremism. The Summit brought together the best minds in government, private sector, academia, and civil society. Being surrounded by these experts sparked new ideas - some of which I've already implemented or have written about.
The Summit unites the public and private sectors, domestic and international, against hate and extremism. Researchers, activists, lawyers, technology experts, political leaders, and more come together, each bringing their unique tools to the fight. Important relationships that were established at the Summit in 2021 have carried forward into working groups with concrete deliverables for 2022 and beyond.
The Eradicating Hate Global Summit was both eye-opening and empowering. To have so many experts in the field of countering hate, all there sharing their expertise, working towards practical and real world solutions, was incredibly unique. It is this focus on meaningful conversations, answers, and solutions that makes Eradicating Hate so incredibly important. The spread of hate is a wicked problem, and the way Eradicating Hate approaches it is how we are going to solve it.
The connections from Pittsburgh have led to meetings and plans, including at the United Nations, demonstrating how different individuals and groups of all faiths and backgrounds can assume a central role to combat hate and nurture peaceful coexistence among citizens and communities.
The Summit was a much-needed platform for ideas to address dangerous trends built on hate and we at The United Nations look forward to the 2022 Summit.
The inaugural Eradicate Hate Summit was a truly impressive gathering of leaders dedicated to finding lasting and effective solutions to violent extremism. I was particularly moved by the prominence given to survivors and family members of victims of hate and violence throughout the event. Their stories and those of so many others must be at the center of what we do and why we do it.
This cannot be thought of as a conference or a summit. The stakes are simply too high and the data/conversation and methods to drive action more valuable/motivating than any gathering I have attended. I took more than 100 pages of notes and have shared them with my CBS News leadership team, anchors, producers, and correspondents. Nothing about this gathering was easy. The agony around this topic is real. But no one curious about it could ask for a more devoted, rational, or unflinching look into this dark but decipherable world.
It is a tragic reality that hateful ideology has found fertile ground online and offline, with consequences affecting not only Americans but people around the world. We cannot stand idle in the face of bias, bigotry, and extremism. Together, at the Eradicate Hate Summit and beyond, the collective will of individuals and organizations is needed to galvanize all people of good will to protect and defend our communities.
To me, Eradicate Hate was the most important gathering of 2021 for those of us who work on issues related to domestic extremism and organized hate. The Summit uniquely combined a variety of perspectives, including experts, civil society representatives, politicians and policymakers, and the families and loved ones of victims. Eradicate Hate has the important mission of standing against the rising tide of hate and extremism in our society, and it's an honor to be able to support this mission.
The Eradicate Hate Global Summit brings together scholars, practitioners, civil society organizations, and policymakers from around the world to share best practices and lessons learned, based on data and empirical evidence, in countering hate-fueled extremism and violent narratives. No other summit, conference, or workshop brings together such an extraordinary group of world-class talent focused on dealing with the issue of hate-fueled violent extremism.
My network of professionals working on countering hate in all its forms grew exponentially after attending Eradicate Hate in 2021. The myriad voices represented at Eradicate Hate, from big tech companies to academic researchers to those with lived experience, reinforced to me the importance of cross-cutting and collaborative approaches to counter hate and its devastating impacts on society. I’ve been fortunate to sustain and build those networks with many of those I met at Eradicate Hate in 2021.
The catalytic power of this Summit in bringing together those who are devoting their lives to pushing back and working to confront, understand and work towards solutions around hate in our society is a noble and difficult task. The Summit not only energized those who attended but led to connecting the dots in a global network of those doing this work. The stories of the victims of hate were painful to witness but their courage in coming forward was inspirational. Those who attended left energized with the hope that by working together solutions can be forged.
The Summit offers a unique opportunity to confront the corrosive influence of bigotry and hatred in our society. In order for us to address these challenges, we first must acknowledge their painful and destructive impact in our communities and in our country. I am grateful to serve as a Global Advisor to this timely and powerful initiative.