CFL launches 'Diversity is Strength' shirts early in response to racism in Charlottesville

Aug 15 2017, 6:55 am

The CFL has moved up its ‘Diversity is Strength’ campaign due to the violence that took place in Charlottesville, Virginia on Saturday.

Players and coaches from both the BC Lions and Saskatchewan Roughriders took to the field on Sunday wearing grey t-shirts, which read ‘Diversity is Strength’ on the front, and had the names of important players of different cultures and races on the back.

Paulo Senra, Director of Communications with the CFL, told Daily Hive in an email that the shirts were originally meant to be rolled out later in the year as part of the Canada 150 celebrations.

“As part of Canada’s 150th birthday, we wanted to highlight the important values of our country and the parallels with our league,” he said. “‘Diversity is Strength’ was ultimately chosen because of how well it encapsulated the progressive history of the CFL and its players.”

Senra said that the decision was made unveil the shirts this weekend in the aftermath of the situation in Charlottesville.

“The idea to release the t-shirts on Sunday in Saskatchewan was a direct response to those events, and yet another way for the CFL to show that while we are not perfect, we are adamantly against hate and bigotry and stand for diversity and inclusion.”

With protesters taking to the streets, riot police in full uniform, and a tragic death via car attack that has has a man charged with second degree murder, it’s no wonder that the CFL decided that now would be an ideal time to send a message of unity.

The limited amount of shirts are set to go on sale Tuesday in the CFL store due to “overwhelming support” for the message they convey.

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