Rams players donate $750,000 to 25 nonprofits focused on social justice

Rams players donate $750,000 to 25 nonprofits focused on social justice

In the aftermath of incidents across the country that spurred calls for social-justice initiatives, Rams players and coaches spoke during the summer and fall of mobilizing for change.

On Tuesday, the team announced that players had contributed $750,000 to 25 Southern California nonprofits focused on social justice.

Defensive lineman Sebastian Joseph-Day said the aim was to “make impactful change in the L.A. community” with the hope that other teams in the NFL and other pro sports would do the same.

“This is a very positive step forward but there’s still a lot more work to be done,” Joseph-Day said during a videoconference with reporters. “That’s the headspace that’s we’re all in…. We want to keep on building on that and keep on improving and keep on trying to find new ways to help the community.”

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Players began discussing their initiative in the wake of the killings of Breonna Taylor in Kentucky and George Floyd in Minnesota by law enforcement, and the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Wisconsin.

Joseph-Day, defensive lineman Michael Brockers, punter Johnny Hekker and offensive lineman Andrew Whitworth participated in virtual conversations with nonprofits to determine how to allocate donations of $20,000 to $50,000, the team said.

“As a leader on this team, it was important to me to be part of these conversations,” Brockers said in a statement. “My teammates and I are very aware of the social injustices that continue to occur, and we made a decision to become actively involved in helping to be part of the change that is desperately needed.

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“It was awesome to hear from so many different leaders and nonprofits that are putting the work in to make real change and I’m honored to support them.”

During a videoconference, Whitworth said it was only a beginning.

“It’s a great day and great opportunity for us to show if we put our heads down and we all work together, there’s positive things we can do and a positive effect we can have,” he said.

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