Lakers Among L.A. Teams In ‘The Alliance’ To Fight Racial Inequality
Lakers-court
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers are joining forces with the 10 other L.A. based professional sports franchises to form “The Alliance: Los Angeles.” The group is collaborating for a five-year commitment to help enact real change for underserved — and predominantly black — communities in the greater L.A. area.

The professional sports teams joining the Lakers in the fight are the Anaheim Ducks, Los Angeles Angels, Los Angeles Chargers, LA Clippers, Los Angeles Dodgers, Los Angeles Football Club, LA Galaxy, LA Kings, Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Sparks. Together, the 11 franchises will hope to support communities of color and level the playing field for the future.

This is yet another effort by professional sports franchises to create avenues for change amid nationwide protests following yet another instance of racially charged police brutality. All of the major American sports leagues are doing their part to address these issues, with the NBA making it a core part of their restart at Walt Disney World.

This alliance of teams is partnering with the L.A. based Play Equity Fund, which is a non-profit charity dedicated to driving social changes through the lens of sport.

This will also further the progress of the Accelerate Change Together (ACT) Anaheim program, which was an initiative started in 2013 by the Orange County professional sports teams — the Angels and Ducks — in partnership with Disney.

Some of the problems that The Alliance will address is the income barrier that prevents so many underprivileged youth from participating in sport. This can include things like transportation to and from facilities, lack of quality programming due to low budget, and high costs for private athletic programs.

This type of partnership is unprecedented in the sports world, as very rarely does every single team within a region work together on something. This is even more impressive when considering the fact that it’s L.A., where there are so many teams that are very spread out geographically.

Between now and 2025, the group should be able to make a substantial difference in the lives of so many young people in the sports world. In addition, they’ll be able to fund programs and schools in a way that changes the future of youth sports in this area.

NBA allowing players to promote social justice causes on the back of their jerseys

The NBA has allowed players to pick from a pre-selected list of social justice phrases that will appear on the back of their jerseys instead of a last name.

This list ranges from phrases such as “Black Lives Matter” to “Equality,” and will give players a platform to keep a conversation going even during a game.

The NBA appears committed to being a major player in social justice reform, and individual teams will undoubtedly do things like The Alliance to supplement the work the league as a whole is doing.

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