San Antonio Spurs: NBA announces new social justice activism initiatives

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - FEBRUARY 15: NBA Commissioner Adam Silver speaks to the media during a press conference at the United Center on February 15, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - FEBRUARY 15: NBA Commissioner Adam Silver speaks to the media during a press conference at the United Center on February 15, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
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The NBA and the San Antonio Spurs are taking steps to create positive change

Earlier this week, the NBA and the rest of the sports world hit an abrupt stop when the Milwaukee Bucks kicked off a movement that would rapidly spread around American professional sports. Today we saw the first results of this movement as the NBA announced a set of new initiatives that will affect the San Antonio Spurs and the rest of the league.

ESPN’s Tim Bontemps outlined the specifics of the new initiatives that will hopefully have a positive impact on social justice, racial inequality, and police reform. There’s a lot to go over so let’s get right into it.

Per Bontemps’ piece, the new commitments include:

  • The formation of a social justice coalition, including representatives among players, coaches, and team owners, that is aimed at creating increased voter access, will promote civic engagement, and advocate for police and criminal justice reform.
  • Every NBA city where the league’s franchise owns and controls its arena property, owners will work with local officials to turn those arenas into voting locations for the 2020 general election. If that isn’t feasible, organizations will look into other ways to use the facilities, such as ballot drop off or as voter registration sites.
  • The league agrees to work with players and its broadcast partners to create advertising that will appear during the NBA playoff games to promote greater civic engagement in national and local elections and to raise awareness around voting access.

One of the biggest criticism that was heard after it came out that the playoffs would resume was the line of “what did these protests even accomplish?” Well, here you have it. Substantial initiatives aimed at necessary social justice, police, and criminal justice reform.

San Antonio Spurs of the present and the past vocally supported the protesting of games earlier this week, we have yet to hear from them regarding how they feel about these recently announced initiatives but surely some of them made their voices heard throughout the process.

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As a nation, we still have a long way to go to get to a place of total equality and justice for all. But these partnered efforts between the league, the players, and owners are a step in the right direction.

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