US Soccer ends no-kneel rule during the national anthem
The United States Soccer Federation will continue to allow players to peacefully protest during the national anthem by ending a controversial policy established in 2017.
In June 2020, the Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber approved peaceful protests and said he will not tolerate players getting death threats for kneeling during the national anthem. The decision was made amid the ‘Black Lives Movement’ that was sparked by the death of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer last year.
On Saturday, 71 percent of the members of the US Soccer council voted in favor to repeal the policy 604-1 and 29 percent voted to keep it in place. The policy 604-1 stated that, “all persons representing a Federation national team shall stand respectfully during the playing of the national anthems at any event in which the Federation is represented.”
The 604-1 policy was established in 2017 and it required players to stand for the national anthem, but now the majority of the council has voted against it and they don’t require players to stand during the national anthem so they can peacefully protest police brutality and social justice.
"This is about the athletes' and our staff's right to peacefully protest racial inequalities and police brutality. So I urge our membership to please support our staff and our athletes on this policy,” said US Soccer president Cindy Parlow Cone.