Frequently Asked Questions

Are racism and discrimination a major problem in football?

There is no doubt that racism and discrimination are a problem in football. In recent years, incidents of racism and discrimination have become increasingly common. Perhaps some people also feel less inhibited in a football stadium than elsewhere. The fact is that the game is one of the few sports where all possible groups meet, so it is particularly vulnerable to racism and discrimination, and this is why we are launching a campaign against racism and discrimination in sport. How can we tackle racism and discrimination in football better? We believe that a campaign is not enough. A campaign is one of twenty elements of the plan 'Football belongs to everyone - together we stop racism. 

Is a campaign enough to combat racism and discrimination in football?

No, we think not. The campaign is one of 20 elements of the plan 'Our football belongs to everyone – together we eliminate racism and discrimination' . These components are divided into four pillars: awareness (including the campaign), investigation, sanctions and support. So we are working on this problem in four areas and all parts reinforce each other.

Where can I read this plan of attack against racism and discrimination in football?

The plan 'Our football belongs to everyone – together we put racism and discrimination aside' can be found here .

The attack plan describes a notification app. Where can I download it?

 Where can I report a racist or discriminatory incident?

You can do that here or with the  Discrimination Reporter app . 

What are racist or discriminatory comments?

These are all comments about someone's religion, origin, nationality, skin color, sexual orientation, gender, disability and age that come across as offensive. The norm is that racism and discrimination are not accepted in any way. So it doesn't matter whether it's about taking the opponent out of his game, frustration, anger or a (wrong) joke. No one should feel excluded because football belongs to everyone and everyone is therefore welcome.

What can one expect from an amateur association in the event of a racist or discriminatory incident?

An association is responsible for the policy of the club and what happens on their site. It is also important that topics such as racism and discrimination are discussed there. The KNVB can help them with this, both with support during the incident and beyond with our training offer in this area. If KNVB members violate the regulations, the disciplinary law system of the KNVB applies.

What happens during a racist or discriminatory chant in a stadium?

The KNVB has a protocol for this with ascending steps, starting with a warning by the stadium speaker and as the last step that the match is definitively stopped. You can read more about the Directive on Combating Verbal Violence here .

What is the advantage of the digital reporting obligation?

The duty to report is the only means by which you can be sure that someone is not in the vicinity of the stadium if he or she is not allowed to be there. An area ban is much more difficult to enforce and costs much more capacity of the police and/or security personnel. The digital reporting obligation has been developed to do something about (legal) proportionality. The person in question does not have to report to a police station, but can report at home on the reporting telephone and pass on his location. With that, there is still the certainty that he or she is not near the stadium.

What are the penalties for racism and discrimination in football?

Both a club, the KNVB and the Public Prosecution Service (OM) can impose penalties. If a victim is insulted with a discriminatory character, the sentence demanded by the Public Prosecution Service is increased by a maximum of 100%.The disciplinary law of the KNVB explicitly mentions the prohibition of discriminatory and racist expressions. Within the 'offending' category, discrimination forms the heaviest gradation. The penalty for this has recently been increased. Clubs that have made insufficient efforts to combat discrimination may, for example, be faced with fines or (partly) playing without an audience. Players may face longer suspensions (matches and practices) or exclusion from matches. The disciplinary court of the KNVB determines what punishment will be imposed.Clubs can impose a stadium ban on visitors to their stadium. When it comes to racism and discrimination, the KNVB can turn this into a national stadium ban of ten years (previously this was five years). This can be doubled to twenty years if the statements have been made to a player. In addition, clubs must always report discrimination in the event of discrimination. This facilitates prosecution and can strengthen the joint approach of civil, criminal and administrative law.

Why are people accused of racist or discriminatory behavior not always punished?

KNVB members can be punished through disciplinary law and stadium visitors can be banned from the stadium . The Netherlands is a state under the rule of law and also in football one is innocent until proven guilty. Sufficient legal evidence is therefore needed to be able to impose a sentence on someone.

Who is behind the plan of attack and the campaign against racism and discrimination in football?

The attack plan  is a joint plan of the national government, the KNVB, Eredivisie and the Kitchen Champion Division. The campaign is supported by more than 50 organizations  and clubs in professional and amateur football.

What is the role of the Mijnals Committee in Our football belongs to everyone?

The complete attack plan consists of 20 parts. One part of this is the think tank, which was later given the name Commission Mijnals. They advise the KNVB on the plan against racism and discrimination and can of course also put forward topics themselves. The think tank was set up to make use of the expertise of various prominent figures and thus be able to combat racism and discrimination even more together.

How do I get the OneLove captain's armband?

The OneLove captain's armband can be purchased here at