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Posted by RLPA

August 22, 2019

RLPA Statement

The Rugby League Players’ Association (RLPA) notes the agreement between its member Mr Jack de Belin and the NRL to discontinue the appeal proceedings in the Federal Court. 

The agreement is in Jack’s interests and we understand the reasons for this.

The RLPA remains of the view that the NRL’s stand down rule has been introduced in breach of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA).

The RLPA also remains of view that the stand down rule operates as an invalid and unreasonable restraint of trade, and will continue to address this with the NRL together with other issues through the CBA dispute process.

In order to protect the collective interests of its members in opposing the rule, the RLPA issued a dispute under the CBA on 24 May 2019, contending that:

  • the NRL did not adhere to its consultation obligations under the CBA in introducing the stand down rule;
  • the NRL cannot make changes to the NRL Rules that are contrary or inconsistent with the CBA; and
  • the RLPA has not agreed to the stand down rule (as is required for any changes to the NRL Rules that are inconsistent with the CBA).

The CBA dispute is therefore focused both on how the NRL went about introducing the stand-down rule (i.e. the process), as well as how the rule itself impacts on the rights of players.

The RLPA understands the pressure the recent alleged integrity issues placed on our game.

However, it is important that under a partnership model the parties to the CBA work together in finding joint solutions to address challenges of this nature. 

The CBA dispute is critical to our members to ensure the role of their collective representative is not undermined and that the arrangements secured under the CBA are protected.

The RLPA will continue to work through the confidential CBA dispute resolution process as set out in our statement of 24 May 2019.

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