English cricket receives more than 1000 complaints of discrimination in past week 8 months ago

English cricket receives more than 1000 complaints of discrimination in past week

More are expected to to come forward after Azeem Rafiq's testimony on Tuesday

More than 1000 complaints of discrimination in English cricket have been made by whistleblowers in the last week, reports the Telegraph.

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Investigators have been engulfed in complaints since the ECB-appointed Independent Commission for Equity in Cricket (ICEC) announced for a 'call for evidence.'

Organisers of the 'call for evidence' are now expecting that number to increase after former Yorkshire cricketer Azeem Rafiq detailed the horrifying accounts of  abuse he suffered during his time as a player at the cricket club in front of MP's in parliament on Tuesday (16 November).

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An 'independent' panel, appointed by Yorkshire themselves, was commissioned in 2020 after Rafiq's attempts to raise allegations internally were ignored for three years.

During the hearing in front of the parliamentary committee, chief executive of the ECB, Tom Harrison, rejected the idea that Yorkshire had requested for the national governing body to handle the allegations brought forward by Rafiq.

He said: "The reason why Yorkshire were allowed to undergo this investigation is because – up to that point – it was fairly normal practice for first-class counties to run their own regulatory process. We have learned lessons through this process."

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Cindy Butts, who was appointed as the chair of the ICEC back in March, urged anyone who has suffered discrimination in the sport, to come forward.

She said: "Since launching part one of our call for evidence last week over 1,000 people have already come forward to share their experiences with us. It is crucial people across the game, many likely inspired by Azeem’s bravery, have the chance to be heard.

"As an independent body established to examine the state of equity in cricket we will go where the evidence takes us. We continue to urge anyone who has experienced discrimination to respond to our call for evidence.”

Butts went on to add that the bravery of Rafiq to speak about his experiences of discrimination "can leave no one in any doubt that cricket must change."

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The ICEC chair also insisted she wanted to use the inquiry - which isn't affiliated to the separate hotlines set up at Yorkshire and Essex CCC's - as a way to tackle all forms of discrimination within the sport.

The online survey, which was set up as a direct response to the case surrounding Rafiq, is continuing to accept submissions until 21 December.

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