The damning report Collingwood DOESN’T want you to read: Secret inquiry uncovers ‘systemic racism’ at AFL club where a black footy star accused players of giving him the nickname ‘CHIMP’
- Damning report has a uncovered culture of ‘systemic racism’ at the AFL club
- Found club’s response to racism were either ineffective or made problem worse
- Delivered to club executives on December 17 but was kept secret until Monday
A damning report has uncovered a culture of ‘systemic racism’ at AFL club Collingwood just days after Magpies legend Eddie McGuire suddenly revealed he was quitting as president.
The scathing report found the club’s attempts to deal with allegations of racism were either ‘ineffective’ or ‘exacerbated’ the situation.
Delivered to club executives on December 17 but kept secret until Monday, the report’s authors said the club had become ‘synonymous with off-field and on-field racism in Australian sport’.
Ex-Collingwood player Heritier Lumumba (left) is suing the Magpies in October over claims he was subjected to racial abuse while playing with the team. An independent report has now hit out at the club’s attempts to deal with allegations of racism
‘While claims of racism have been made across the AFL, there is something distinct and egregious about Collingwood’s history,’ the report obtained by the Herald Sun said.
‘There is a gap between what Collingwood Football Club says it stands for and what it does.’
The review follows ex-Collingwood player Heritier Lumumba suing the Magpies in October over claims he was subjected to racial abuse while playing with the team.
The report – conducted by two experts in Aboriginal affairs from Sydney’s University of Technology – called for a separate investigation into Lumumba’s claims.
Entitled ‘Do Better — Independent review into Collingwood Football Club’s responses to incidents of racism and cultural safety in the workplace’, the report referred to nearly a dozen high-profile allegations of racism at the club.
Included among them was a mention of McGuire’s joke suggestion in 2013 that Sydney Swans Indigenous star Adam Goodes should be used to promote the King Kong musical.
Lumumba pictured in 2016. As well as heavily criticising Collingwood’s response to allegations of racism, the report called for a separate investigation into the former player’s claims
Collingwood Magies President Eddie Maguire announced in Decmber he would be stepping away from his position at the end of the 2021 season after 23 years in the top role
Its authors Professor Larissa Behrendt and Professor Lindon Coombes also mentioned Lumumba’s claim he was nicknamed ‘Chimp’ by other Magpies players.
The report conceded the AFL giant had taken ‘important and positive steps’ to address reports of racism.
Collingwood said in December it would review the report’s findings and publicly comment on them early in the New Year.
The same month, McGuire – a Collingwood icon who has spent 23 years at the helm of the club – announced he was stepping away from his position at the end of the 2021 season.
He told members he was determined to fight against racism at the club’s playing and training facilities during his final season in charge.
More to come