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NRL Chief Executives re-enforce zero tolerance approach to racism and abuse of players

NRL Chief Executives re-enforce zero tolerance approach to racism and abuse of players
August 15, 2019

A meeting of chief executives of National Rugby League clubs has seen a re-enforcement of the game's zero tolerance approach to racism and abuse of players.

At a meeting in Sydney yesterday, all 16 chief executives gave their absolute support to players who have called out such incidents, with NRL Chief Executive Todd Greenberg stating "today was a timely opportunity to have a collective discussion about racial intolerance in our community.

“We agreed the standard you walk past is the standard you accept which is why we must call out racism in all its forms. The room congratulated players who had spoken out against racial intolerance in recent days. It will not be tolerated in our game.”

Approval was given for the NRL to launch a variety of capability development programs that clubs will participate in to develop future executive leaders across the game.

One example of this over the past week has seen Queensland Cowboys player Josh McGuire subjected to examples of racism, bullying and vilification through social media.

With McGuire currently suspended for on-field disciplinary incidents, his wife, Tanyssa, advised that the player has received “death threat upon death threat, countless threats of the most unthinkable things”.

She wrote on her Instagram page: “Mental health is constantly being spoken about within the NRL and yet what I am witnessing is the absolute bashing of a man who can only take so much before that thick skin starts to soften.”

Following the threats, McGuire is now seeking professional mental health support.

Sports psychologist and adjunct academic at the Australian College of Applied Psychology Dr Clive Jones said the use of social media had added psychological challenges many sports codes were grappling to overcome.

Dr Jones told the Townsville Bulletin “unfortunately it’s still at the reaction stage, at the moment it only kicks in when athletes have already been affected.

“There’s a heck of a lot of security at sporting events to keep athletes safe but those forms of security aren’t in place online.”

Yesterday’s meeting also saw the NRL progress work on the potential creation of trade window periods to enhance the player contracting process.

Related Articles

9th August 2019 - NRL looks to guide reputation of the game with new corporate affairs appointment

4th August 2019 - Court hears that NRL off season incidents have ‘ruined’ Telstra’s brand

15th June 2019 - Telstra expands NRL deal to include women’s rugby league

7th June 2019 - AFL issues ‘unreserved’ apology over racism faced by Adam Goodes

24th May 2019 - Rugby Australia Chairman acknowledges reputation damage from Israel Folau saga

21st March 2019 - NRL looks to relocate financially troubled clubs under new licensing agreement

20th March 2019 - Online trolling of AFLW player Tayla Harris’ in-game image compared to sexual abuse

1st March 2019 - Growing digital revenues drive NRL to $46 million profit

20th September 2018 - NRL advises of rise in rugby league participation through 2018

27th March 2018 - Strategic Plan launched to guide the future of rugby league

27th May 2013 - Sport stars unite to stamp racism out of sport


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