Racial and Religious Vilification Policy
RACIAL AND RELIGIOUS VILIFICATION POLICY
a) No player in his capacity as a player of a club or, in the course of carrying out his duties or functions as or incidental to a player of a Club or any director officer servant, or agent of a Club (including without limitation any coach, assistant coach, trainer, medical officer, runner or person entitled to enter the arena during the course of or prior to or during any break in play in any match) shall act towards or speak to any other person in a manner, or engage in any other person in a manner, or engage in any other conduct which threatens, disparages, vilifies or insults another person (“the person vilified”) on the basis of that person’s race, religion, colour, descent or national or ethnic origin.
b) In the event that it is alleged that a person has contravened Rule (a) an umpire, club or player may by 5:00pm on the first working day following the day on which the contravention is alleged to have occurred, lodge a complaint in writing with the person appointed from time to time by the League as the Complaints Officer for the purposes of this Rule.
c) The League shall:
i. Inform the person alleged to have contravened Rule (a) of the complaint and provide that person with an opportunity to respond to it.
ii. Arrange for the complaint to be conciliated and take all steps necessary for the complaint to be conciliated.
d) Where the League is of the opinion that the matter has not been resolved by conciliation, the League shall:-
i. In the case of a player, refer the complaint to the tribunal to be dealt with as a reportable offence under the Laws of Australian Football; or
ii. In the case of any other person, refer the complaint to the League to be dealt with under Rule 5.2 of the VCFL Rules and Regulations.
e) Where a person alleged to have contravened Rule (a) has previously taken part in a conciliation (other than as a person vilified), the League may refer the complaint directly to the Tribunal to be dealt with as a reportable offence under the Laws of Australian Football in the case of a player, or directly to the League to be dealt with under Rule 5.2 of the VCFL Rules and Regulations in the case of any other person.
f) Any conciliation referred to in Rule (c) shall be conducted by the nominee of the President for the time being of the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission (Commonwealth) provided that if the President is unable or unwilling to nominate, the League shall nominate a person to conciliate, subject to the approval of the VCFL Area Manager.
g) In the event that a complaint is referred to the League Tribunal under Rule (d), no evidence shall be given to or accepted by the Tribunal or the League relating to anything said or done in any conciliation carried out pursuant to Rule (c).
h) In the event that a Complaints Officer has not been appointed for the purposes of these rules or if appointed is for any reason unavailable to act under these rules, the Complaints Officer for the purpose of these Rules shall be the League Secretary/General Manager.
i) The Complaints Officer shall make all reasonable efforts to ensure that conciliation of a complaint under Rule (c) is completed by 5:00pm, on the fifth working day following the day the day in which the incident is alleged to have occurred.
j) In any case where the Complaints Officer determines to refer the complaint to the Tribunal or the League; the complaint shall be referred in time for the Tribunal or the League as the case may be, to deal with it within 48 hours of any cessation in the conciliation process.
k) Any time limit for the doing of anything referred to in this Rule may be extended by the League if in the opinion of the League it is just and equitable to do so.
l) In the event that a complaint under these Rules in respect of conduct engaged in by person is found to have been proved by the tribunal or where the League determines that a person the subject of a complaint has been involved in conduct which is unbecoming or prejudicial to the interests of the League, the club employing, engaging or otherwise associated with the person at the time of the conduct shall be deemed to be vicariously liable for the conduct of the person and shall pay to the League a penalty determined by the League.
m) Rule (l) [above] does not apply to a contravention by a person if in the opinion of the League the club took all reasonable steps to prevent persons employed, engaged or otherwise associated with the club from engaging in the conduct which contravened the vilification rules.