Commend World Cup’s Focus on Workers’ Rights

Target: FIFA executive Theo Zwanziger

Goal: Thank executive for pushing Qatar to make reforms to respect migrant workers’ rights

The World Cup, like the Olympics, is an opportunity for nations to gather together and peaceably compete. However, unlike the International Olympics Committee, the international soccer association, FIFA, has made it clear that they value human rights and will use their influence to push for reforms in the host country. The 2022 World Cup was awarded to Qatar in what was hailed as recognition of the country as a part of the developed world. However, the spotlight that the World Cup carries has illuminated the abuses of migrant workers in the country.

Discrimination toward South Asian migrant workers is not uncommon in the country. The view of non-Qataris as “less than” has certainly contributed to the present lack of protection and exploitation of migrant workers within the country. Migrant workers are regularly paid unlivable wages in jobs that have extremely poor working conditions. In what amounts to slave labor, workers will regularly work 6 days per week in extreme heat without sufficient water.

Fortunately, FIFA has pressured Qatar to reform by creating an updated “workers’ charter,” creating new human rights requirements for World Cup facility construction workers. The association has also threatened to have the World Cup later in the year if Qatar does not make sufficient changes.

Finally, with a promise to prioritize human rights records in future World Cup location decisions, FIFA executive Theo Zwanziger has given many countries monetary incentive to reform their laws and respect basic human rights. Sign this petition to thank the organization and Zwanziger for using their influence to push respect for human rights.


Dear Theo Zwanziger,

Your actions to use FIFA’s influence to push for human rights reform are remarkable. As you have rightly pointed out, conditions for migrant workers in Qatar are abysmal. Extreme heat, slave pay, and short weekends are indicative of the discrimination and disadvantage faced by South Asian migrant workers every day.

Your choice to prioritize human rights records in future World Cup location decisions will further incentive many nations to respect human rights. Hopefully FIFA’s actions will also encourage the International Olympics Committee to take a similar stance on human rights.

Thank you for bringing attention to the plight of migrant workers in Qatar and encouraging respect for each human’s dignity.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: daly3d abd via Wikimedia Commons

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