Off the Wall

The ARLC - which now runs the game - has sent the right message with the penalties it has imposed on Robert Lui and Isaac Gordon.

Rugby league has a simple choice - if it wants to embrace campaigns that demand women be treated the right way all the time it must have a zero tolerance policy when it comes to NRL players who are found guilty of domestic violence, especially violence against their partners, and violence against women generally.  The game has sought to take a lead on an issue which is a much greater problem for society that is generally appreciated. In the past there has been too much waffle and double standards over the issue.

The decisions yesterday by the ARLC to suspend Lui for the season, and Gordon for nine matches is probably right on the mark. The question which the ARLC needs to answer is how much of their contracts Lui and Gordon will be paid during the suspension periods. As an example, the penalties are significantly diminished if Lui continues to be paid during the suspension period.

Surely that is not going to happen?

At best he should be forced to give up the bulk of his contact payments. This a grey area the ARLC needs to establish a clear policy on.

If a player is suspended for serious disciplinary reasons - such as domestic violence - there must be a monetary sanction, and that means the forfeiture of all or a substantial  part of contract payments.

The ARLC has made a sound start on this one.  It has established a policy it needs to stick to.

And what a welcome change that is!

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