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Color Of Change Responds to NCAA Decision on Athletes’ Compensation

For Immediate Release: October 29, 2019

NATIONWIDE – In response to the NCAA Board of Governors’ vote today to allow athletes to profit from their names, images and likenesses, Color Of Change, the nation’s largest online racial justice organization, issued the following statement from Vice President Arisha Hatch:

“The NCAA Board of Governors’ unanimous vote to finally recognize the contributions and sacrifices of college athletes is an important and overdue step forward. However, it by no means ensures that Black student-athletes, who make up the majority of the NCAA’s revenue-generating teams, will be fairly compensated or free from exploitation.

This drastic change in policy from the NCAA goes to show the impact of our organizing. Color Of Change’s 1.5 million members advocated in support of California’s Fair Pay to Play Act for months. Now, less than one month after its historic passage, the NCAA is coming to the table. 

This is important progress, but the work continues. The NCAA announced that it plans to impose strict limitations on how students will be able to profit from their own names, images, and likenesses. So long as these rules on pay and benefits, which can define a student’s ability to financially support oneself, are set by a profit-driven monopoly, student-athletes will not be fully protected. The Fair Pay to Play Act must be enshrined in federal law. 

Like any other group of workers in this country, student-athletes deserve protections set by lawmakers — not corporate executives — who are held accountable by the American public.”

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