NASCAR on Wednesday announced that the Confederate flag will no longer be tolerated at its races.
“The display of the Confederate flag will be prohibited from all NASCAR events and properties,” the organization announced on social media. (Read the full statement below.)
The flag, which was created and used by the 11 states that seceded from the United States of America in the lead-up to the American Civil War, is associated with slavery and white supremacy, and it is classified as a hate symbol by anti-hate groups like the ADL. The insignia has long been seen in abundance at NASCAR races; though the organization stopped using the flag in any official capacity years ago, it had not outlawed fans from waving, wearing or sporting it at races.
“In all areas that NASCAR controls on a given race weekend, the flag has no presence,” then-CEO Brian France said in 2015.
Here is NASCAR’s current statement in full:
The presence of the confederate flag at NASCAR events runs contrary to our commitment to providing a welcoming and inclusive environment for all fans, our competitors and our industry. Bringing people together around a love for racing and the community that it creates is what makes our fans and sport special. The display of the confederate flag will be prohibited from all NASCAR events and properties.
The ban comes a two days after NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace told CNN’s Don Lemon that he wanted the symbols removed entirely. “Get them out of here,” he said. (Watch video below.)