MLS has formed a Diversity Committee to held the league address racism, advocate for social justice and increase representation in soccer.
The initiative follows talks between the Black
Players For Change and the league.
MLS Commissioner Don Garber
will be on the committee, which will also include members from the MLS Board of Governors and Black Players For
Change (BPC) as well as club executives, head coaches, academy coaches, former MLS players and members of Pitch Black, a resource group of Black employees from the league office.
“Major League Soccer is committed to utilizing our wide-ranging platforms to create meaningful programs to address racism and social injustice in society and in the sport of soccer,” said
Garber in a statement. “Importantly, alongside key stakeholders, including MLS owners, Black Players For Change, former players, Black members of our technical staff and other employees,
we have created a series of initiatives to close the representation gap across soccer in the U.S. and Canada.”
MLS owners have contributed $1 million to Black Players For Change to
support the growth of the organization.
Initiatives being undertaken include MLS Unites to Vote, the program clubs have adopted to encourage voter education and participation in the 2020
MLS will work to provide access and exposure for players from underrepresented groups, as well as create policies and educational opportunities
to increase Black representation in executive and sporting positions at the league office, clubs and other North American soccer organizations. That work will extend to to close the representation gap
at the grassroots level.
MLS is starting a program to provide meaningful opportunities and economic inclusion to minority-owned businesses around major league events and in the
hiring of vendors and agencies at the league and club level.
The league has also partnered with the National Coalition of 100 Black Women and 100 Black Men of America.