Research Handbook of Employment Relations in Sport
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Research Handbook of Employment Relations in Sport

Edited by Michael Barry, James Skinner and Terry Engelberg

Employment relations, much discussed in other industries, has often been neglected in professional sports despite its unique characteristics. The book aims to explore in detail the unique nature of the employment relationship in professional sports and the sport industry.
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Chapter 12: Discrimination issues and related law

Klaus Vieweg and James A.R. Nafziger


The great South African leader and amateur heavyweight boxer, Nelson Mandela, took sports seriously. He did so both for its own sake and as an instrument to achieve social justice in the era of apartheid. After he became President, he sought to employ sports as a means for unifying the races and projecting a progressive image of South Africa. But serious as he was about the role of sports, he famously observed that sport “laughs in the face of all types of discrimination.” Discrimination in the sports arena is, of course, no laughing matter. It is one of the most serious issues of sports law. In recent years measures to combat discrimination in sports have been fundamental as the law has tried to keep pace with new issues and developments.

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