John Terry's four-match ban for racially abusing Anton Ferdinand has undermined the Football Association's hard-line stance on tackling racism, according to players' chief Clarke Carlisle.
Terry has until October 18 to appeal against his suspension and £220,000 fine, but Professional Footballers Association chairman Carlisle believes even if the punishment stands it is not consistent with the eight-match ban handed to Liverpool forward Luis Suarez last year for racially abusing Manchester United defender Patrice Evra.
"I think what we felt as an industry was that the Luis Suarez eight-match ban really did send out a strong message to the members of the union and the public at large that racism isn't tolerated in the game," Carlisle told BBC Radio Five Live's Sportsweek programme. "To dilute that with this four-match ban, it has almost undermined the initial message that went out."
Carlisle called for a rehabilitation programme to be imposed on top of any suspension for a racism offence.
"If part of their integration is actively partaking in the anti-discrimination campaigns, in the seminars that go on, not only will they benefit from the information that's shown in these seminars, but also it shows that they do show some remorse for their actions and a willingness to contribute to the campaigns moving forward so that other people are aware of the message that's being sent out," Carlisle added.
"If (Terry) doesn't contest this decision and an appeal isn't forthcoming it would do John Terry's image a lot of good if he was seen to be contributing to these sort of campaigns and also it would further affirm the message that this is something that we stand for in football."