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Our Watch response to NRL statement on domestic violence allegations against former South Sydney Rabbitohs player, Sam Burgess

October 2, 2020 / Our Watch media

In this article

Responding to today’s announcement by the NRL in response to allegations of domestic violence by former NRL player and South Sydney Rabbitohs assistant coach, Sam Burgess, Our Watch CEO Patty Kinnersly said:  

“We welcome the NRL’s statement about investigating these serious allegations and we commend it for reiterating a zero-tolerance stance against violence against women.

Rugby ball on the grass with goal posts in the distance.

There is no place for discrimination, disrespect , and violence against women in sport or society more broadly, and this violence must be condemned from the top. 

“Leadership from Australia’s national sporting codes is incredibly important because it sends a message to everyone involved with the organisation, including the coaches, referees, players, former players, staff, volunteers, sponsors and fans, that there is no place for disrespect and abuse towards women in sport or anywhere in our community.

“Sport has the potential to play a powerful role in changing attitudesbehaviours, and entire organisations by modelling positive examples way beyond the field on which it’s played.

Our Watch will continue to work closely with the National Rugby League (NRL) through its Equality and Respect in Sport program to assist the organisation to embed gender equality and respectful relationships into its networks and communities. 

Our Watch’s Equality and Respect in Sport program also supports Netball Australia, Rugby Australia, the National Rugby League (NRL), the Australian Football League (AFL), and Football Federation Australia (FFA) to build their capacity to promote gender equality.



Media contact

Saraya Musovic, Senior Media and Communications Advisor (saraya.musovic@ourwatch.org.au or 0448 844 930) or media@ourwatch.org.au

*If you cover this story, or any story regarding violence against women and children, please include the following tagline:
“If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault, family or domestic violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit www.1800RESPECT.org.au. In an emergency, call 000.”

To access guides for reporting about violence against women and their children, visit Media Making Change.

About Our Watch

Our Watch is a national leader in Australia’s work to stop violence against women and their children before it starts. The organisation was created to drive nation-wide change in the practices, norms and structures that lead to violence against women and children.

Find out more about our work to end violence against women in Australia.

The evidence
Woman holding baby.