It’s not often that I see eye to eye with the New Republic and Slate, but they have both picked up on the scandal of Qatar hosting the 2022 World Cup. ESPN was the first to give real attention to this story through their E:60 documentary on the plight of migrant workers in Qatar. Due to working conditions and the outrageous heat, it is estimated that 1,200 of those workers have died while helping build one of the needed twelve soccer stadiums. At that rate, 4,800 will die in order to finish all of the facilities. Worse, through Qatar’s kafala system, employers confiscate their workers’ visas and passports, making them de facto forced laborers.
No sporting event is worth this cost in human lives. FIFA, the U.S., and all participating countries should pull out of the 2022 World Cup until Qatar addresses these serious violations of workers’ rights. See the preview of the ESPN report below: