In light of the recent videos showing some really poor behaviour during Queensland rugby league matches over the last month, we thought it timely to revive conversation about the general principles of the NRL's Code of Conduct* and the SDRL Members Protection Policy** and encourage our community to join us.
Shocking video of a brawl between QRL fans was seen across news reports and social channels this week and has raised a lot of concerns for the integrity of the code and the overall public perception of the rugby league community.
South Darwin Rugby League Football Club absolutely agrees with QRL South East Queensland chairman, Brad Tallon’s, comment acknowledging that this is “not just a rugby league problem, it is a community problem”. It is a SDRL Committee long-term objective that we build a safe and inclusive environment for all players, parents, coaches, referees, spectators and volunteers of our great game. We are working very hard to bring our club into a new era for everyone's benefit.
We are aware of some recent incidents of anti-social behaviour occurring at local NRL NT matches and whilst we are lobbying behind the scenes to have those matters addressed, we'd also like to remind our members, players, volunteers and spectators to honour the values of the NRL Code of Conduct and the SDRLFC Members Protection Policy.
Foreseeable consequences of this unacceptable behaviour can include players being suspended and some even charged with criminal offences, or as we saw - a whole team (The Burpengary Jets in QRL) forced to withdraw from their competition and games across Australia being called off altogether. We don't want to see that happen here, to anyone.
The NT is renowned for our tight-knit community that SDRL are proud to be a part of. One recent example of clubs and community supporting one another can be found on our Facebook page where we were thanked for “the willingness and the genuineness of the SDRL club and team as you accepted all the boys with open arms and provided them an opportunity to play and perform”.
The juniors mentioned are from Katherine and played with SDRL Rabbitohs junior teams throughout the season which saw two of them selected to represent the NT in Townsville at the Laurie Spina Shield Carnival.
The heartfelt thanks that was received certainly showcases how our rugby league community enthusiastically lives and breathes the code’s principles of #Excellence #Inclusiveness #Courage and #Teamwork.
Lets keep leading by example Rabbitohs and be a shinning light in this dark day for Australian rugby league.
#LetKidsBeKids is a national campaign that was launched this year by playbytherules.com who have an array of useful resources for everyone involved in community sports, check it out here.
If you see or hear of an incident that you think might be in breach of the NRL's Code of Conduct, then we urge you to report the incident to any club official or the NRL NT as soon as possible so that anti-social behaviour can be addressed.
*The NRL Code of Conduct provides all participants – players, parents, coaches, referees, spectators and officials – with some simple rules that assist in delivering a safe and positive environment to everyone involved in the game.
**The main objective of the SDRLFC Member Protection Policy is to maintain responsible behaviour and the making of informed decisions by members and other participants in this club. It outlines our commitment to a person’s right to be treated with respect and dignity, and to be safe and protected from discrimination, harassment and abuse.