James Tavernier: Rangers captain says every black player at the club has been racially abused this season

Rangers captain James Tavernier called for “box ticking” to end following Wednesday’s Scottish FA summit on diversity and inclusion, saying every black player at the club has been the victim of racist abuse this season.

Clubs across Scotland met on Wednesday afternoon to discuss how Scottish football can tackle racism and discrimination.

It follows the alleged racist abuse of Glen Kamara during Rangers’ Europa League match against Slavia Prague on March 18. Slavia deny the allegations and say there has been “biased pressure on UEFA and police officials” during ongoing investigations.

Tavernier was one of four representatives from Rangers who attended the SFA meeting.

He described the discussion as a “useful exercise” but revealed the extent of the problem for the black players at Ibrox and stressed the importance of achieving clear outcomes rather than just ticking boxes from now on.

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“This was a very useful exercise and it was pleasing to be able to air my views to the rest of the clubs in the SPFL as well as the SFA,” he said in a statement.

“Every black player in our squad had been the victim of racist abuse this season, either online or in the case of Glen Kamara, on the field of play. This is unacceptable and must stop.

“It is vital that football authorities, clubs, government bodies and social media companies work together to educate and empower to ultimately, eradicate hatred from our game and society in general.

“We are keen to continue to engage but highlighted that we need to see clear outcomes from discussions rather than simply ticking a box.”

Bartley also says he would be willing to join a boycott of social media companies after Thierry Henry made an impact by closing down his accounts due to a lack of regulation against racism and bullying on their platforms.

He added: “I am up for trying anything that can make a difference. There is strength in numbers, we can act as a collective.

“Not only players but anyone who is against racism. It doesn’t matter what your job is, if we all decide to come off these platforms, that is going to hit them in the pocket.

“Until they are financially hit they do not really care about it. If we do it in numbers it can work, I have a lot of respect for Thierry Henry and him using his platform in the right way.”

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