[2021] C08 Online abuse: time for real change

carried motion
Carried motion

Received from: ,

Motion 40 and amendments

Congress calls on the General Council to join with the PFA in its fight to eradicate online abuse and tackle the disgusting and abhorrent racist and discriminatory abuse that its members and the wider footballing community endure day-in, day-out in their working lives.

The racism directed at the players after the Euros Final has taken an already shocking and appalling situation to new depths and it is high time the government showed a real intent and determination to hold the perpetrators to account.

It is not enough to rely on the social media platforms to police themselves as time after time they have failed to stop the abuse or indeed demonstrated sincerely that they have a genuine will to do so. Social media sites enable, empower and embolden racists to spew their abuse, safe in the knowledge there will be little or no recourse for their indefensible actions.

The legislation going through parliament is a step in the right direction but should be stronger, and robust regulation without fear or favour is needed in this sphere now.

This England team embodies the best of all of us and Congress is incredibly proud of the way PFA members have performed and conducted themselves and the way they have united a nation after some of the hardest times. Those young players played their hearts out and came so close to bringing football home.

In recognition of what they achieved and the rights we hold dear as trade unionists Congress calls on our movement to take up this fight so that the union members in our ranks can be given the respect and protection they rightly deserve.

Congress deplores the online abuse directed at trade union reps, officials and leaders for simply representing their members.

The abuse and threats to NHS staff, public servants and their unions, whether online or onsite must stop. The pandemic has seen a major increase in this.

Congress calls on social media platforms, employers and the government to take action to counteract and protect.

Bullying and harassment in any form, online or in person, is wholly unacceptable and Congress calls upon regulatory authorities to improve enforcement and increase sanctions against those who abuse others online.

Mover: PFA
Seconder: Chartered Society of Physiotherapy
Supporters: Royal College of Midwives, Accord