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Posted by RLPA

March 21, 2017

The CBA Explained

The CBA explained

This year marks the final year of the current Collective Bargaining Agreement between the NRL and Players. The NRL, representing itself and NRL Clubs, along with the Rugby League Players Association, as representative of the Players, will be involved in negotiations throughout the season to agree terms and conditions of the next CBA which will take effect from 1 November 2017.  


What is the Collective Bargaining Agreement (or CBA)?

The Collective Bargaining Agreement is an agreement between the NRL and the RLPA, which sets out the minimum terms and conditions of the Players’ employment and other important arrangements within the sport of Rugby League. The CBA includes a range of important matters that govern the relationship between all parties involved and balances the interests of all key stakeholders in the best interests of the Game and its Players.


What does the RLPA hope to achieve from the next CBA?  

The RLPA is committed to establishing terms and conditions that ensure Players at all levels of elite competition are valued, engaged and empowered to thrive both on and off the field of play.  


How will this be achieved?

Working together

Create a genuine partnership between the Players and the NRL that values the voice of the Playing Group in key decisions and inspires and motivates Players to grow the Game.


Contracting and commercial arrangements

Develop a fair and straightforward contracting model and enable Players to capitalise their commercial value in the Game as well as recognising the challenges posed by career transition.



Promotion of integrity and the Game’s values by recognising the importance of our actions both on and off the field. Empowering Players and providing the support for rehabilitation and reform.


Wellbeing and education

Increase focus on tailored wellbeing and education and a recognition that better people make better Players through promotion of personal and professional development and support during and after their playing careers.


Creating world class workplaces

Prioritise Player welfare, health and safety, development of best practice standards and the delivery of world class facilities.  


Representation and engagement

Acknowledge the contribution of all Players at the elite level, including retired Players, and recognise the value of a well-resourced and effective RLPA.


Competition structure  

Address increasing scheduling demands on Players, and identify an aspirational competition structure consistent with elite pathways that promotes the best product possible by enabling Players to have long and successful careers.  


How will this benefit the Playing Group and the Game?

Through a fair, balanced CBA and establishing a genuine partnership between the NRL and Players, we will ensure the fairest systems, best support, ongoing education and care for our Players, ultimately enhancing their elite performance, on and off-field. In addition, Players at all levels of elite competition will be encouraged to take ownership of the Game’s growth and development.

The Collective Bargaining Agreement is the most important document in professional Rugby League.  It is crucial that we take this opportunity to improve the Players terms and conditions, as well as safeguarding the Game and setting it up to prosper into the future.


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