CLEVELAND — Cleveland’s three major sports teams have launched an alliance “to develop a sustainable and direct strategy to address social injustice facing the city of Cleveland and all Northeast Ohio communities.”
“The alliance will also focus on improving the relationship between law enforcement and its citizens, encouraging nonpartisan voting activities and increasing the opportunities for quality education for everyone,” officials said in a press release.
The group will use their team’s platforms to call for action and positive outcomes. Players will also be given the opportunity to get involved and make a difference.
“We have an extraordinary opportunity to make a lasting impact on society and the Cavaliers are committed to help bring about change,” said Cavs General Manager Koby Altman. “The social and economic disparity in our community reveals some ugly truths, and Coach Bickerstaff and I are honored to be at the table to address these issues with such a prominent group of our peers. We never take for granted our place in the fabric of Cleveland and hopefully our coming together inspires others to join us.”
Other key leaders within this alliance include Cavs Head Coach J.B. Bickerstaff, Browns General Manager Andrew Berry, Browns Head Coach Kevin Stefanski, Indians President of Baseball Operations Chris Antonetti, Indians General Manager Mike Chernoff and Indians Manager Terry Francona.
“We understand the platform our organization has to make a positive impact on these important issues,” said Berry. “When Coach Stefanski and I began discussing how we might be able to elevate and broaden that impact by expanding the dialogue to our counterparts in Cleveland, it quickly became apparent that partnering with the other teams in our city would help our region come together so we can collectively address the problems that we’ve all been working to help solve independently.”
While initial actions will concentrate on voting, voter education and nonpartisan voter registration, this group will also connect and work in partnership with community and civic leaders and minority organizations to address issues impacting the individuals they represent.
“We recognize the profound impact that professional sports have on the greater Cleveland community, and the enormous responsibility that comes with such a platform,” said Antonetti. “While the circumstances that highlighted the need for this partnership are disheartening, Tito, Mike and I are excited by the opportunity to work with such a thoughtful and diverse group of leaders to identify opportunities to be a positive force for change. There is a lot of work to do, and we believe that this partnership will serve to amplify our collective impact.”