« It has always been important to me to create a club that is welcoming to everyone. We actively celebrate our cultural and religious diversity »
Our campaign is leading the way in the fight against discrimination
Under the leadership of club owner Roman Abramovich, Chelsea FC has been working with partners to create a programme to tackle antisemitism in a way that has a deep and meaningful impact. The Say No to Antisemitism project is now setting the standard for combating discrimination, not just at Stamford Bridge, but also in our wider communities.
Our partners include the World Jewish Congress, the Community Security Trust, the Holocaust Educational Trust, Kick It Out, Jewish Museum London, Maccabi GB, Anne Frank House, the Office of the Chief Rabbi, the Board of Deputies of British Jews, the Anti-Defamation League and the Jewish Leadership Council.
There can be no place in our game, nor our society, for antisemitism or any form of discrimination – and we are determined to inspire others around us to join this vital cause.
The launch of the campaign took place at Chelsea’s match against Bournemouth on 31 January 2018, four days after Holocaust Memorial Day, and saw a wide range of activities taking place in and around Stamford Bridge. Fans were handed specially designed phone wallets encouraging them to report any discrimination they witnessed, while a giant Say No to Antisemitism banner was unfurled on the pitch. In the Directors’ Box, the Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis presided over a candle-lighting ceremony and was joined by special guests, including Holocaust survivor Harry Spiro and leaders from the Jewish community.
A special matchday programme was produced featuring a unique foreword by Roman Abramovich:
“It has always been important to me to create a club that is welcoming to everyone. We actively celebrate our cultural and religious diversity and, through the work of the Chelsea Foundation, deliver programmes to promote equality and tackle discrimination all over the world. However, we are all too often reminded there is more to be done.
On 27 January, the world observed Holocaust Memorial Day. The Holocaust was a crime without parallel in history. We must never forget such atrocities and must do our utmost to prevent them from ever happening again. It is my honour to dedicate this match to the victims of the Holocaust and to the Jewish community.
I am proud to launch an initiative to raise awareness of and to tackle antisemitism in all its forms, and hope to have your support for this work.
This is the start of an important journey and we all have a part to play. We can all do something to challenge discrimination at our club as well as within the world around us.
With your help, Chelsea can play a leading role in this vital area of work and demonstrate to everybody that we are a club open to all.”