Goyder and McLachlan need to take responsibility


2020: Former Saint Robbie Muir’s expertise, as reported on the ABC.

2020: Indigenous gamers advised they have to obtain extra injections than non-Indigenous gamers to enter Queensland hubs.

2020: The Peter Jackson evaluate into the AFL’s method to Indigenous points and their help for Indigenous gamers.

2021: Collingwood’s Do Higher report leaked after which reviewed by the AFL.

2021: Adelaide ahead Taylor Walker banned for six weeks for racial vilification.

2022: Norm Smith medallist Cyril Rioli explains why he turned his again on Hawthorn and the sport.

2022: Eddie Betts’ revelations in regards to the Adelaide pre-season camp, and the membership discovered to have damaged no guidelines.

2022: An absence of session over minute’s silence after Queen’s dying.

Alastair Clarkson (left) and Chris Fagan at Hawthorn in 2016.

Alastair Clarkson (left) and Chris Fagan at Hawthorn in 2016.Credit score:Getty Photos.

The Peter Jackson evaluate, which noticed the revered former membership CEO communicate to many Indigenous folks within the recreation, has by no means seen the sunshine of day.

There was, finally, Indigenous liaison officers employed at each membership, and the AFL’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Council was revamped with larger alignment throughout the business promised.

Nonetheless, the record will get longer as we stagger from incident to incident with out improved methods or actual accountability from these on the prime, reminiscent of Richard Goyder, who we by no means hear from or see when controversial points come up.


Now we’ve got a four-person unbiased panel set as much as look at these allegations. Once more, we’re on the backside of the cliff attempting to catch folks after the injury has been carried out.

All day I’ve heard the phrases “surprising” and “disgusting” used to explain what’s contained within the media report, however Aboriginal folks and gamers have been pointing to systemic points that enable such issues to happen for years.

But nobody has satisfactorily acted upon considerations, or we’re seen to be whinging, or there’s an excuse {that a} choice was made below strain, or there are considerations expressed in regards to the psychological well being of an individual concerned.

No surprise many Aboriginal folks within the recreation are reluctant to talk up as a result of they know they are going to be topic to gaslighting or in any other case have their time wasted.

Each membership needs to be open to a report on the experiences of their Indigenous previous gamers and the AFL needs to be held accountable greater than anybody. They’re the governing physique of this recreation. If Hawthorn have failed, the AFL has failed.

AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan speaks to the media after the Hawthorn racism allegations.

AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan speaks to the media after the Hawthorn racism allegations.Credit score:Getty Photos

I didn’t need to hear as we speak that McLachlan had spoken to this individual and that individual, or that the problems have been broader than soccer as a result of soccer has, just like the nation, had the possibility to handle racism and so they haven’t.

It could have been good to listen to him going through questions from Indigenous in addition to non-Indigenous reporters to get a cross-section of views on what mattered most.

What issues most is that we handle the problems that maintain arising in order that the harm and ache that’s being inflicted upon folks through their connection to the sport doesn’t happen. The questions raised about Hawthorn have to be rigorously addressed to get to the reality.

However the recreation can’t ignore the necessity for critical motion led by the Fee and involving the AFL.

It’s about doing the proper factor, not doing higher.

Mathew Stokes is a Larrakia man who performed 200 video games with Geelong and Essendon. He performed in Geelong’s 2007 and 2011 premiership groups.

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