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MEND Press Release: Over 40 community organisations in Yorkshire call upon the Yorkshire County Cricket Club to investigate institutional racism within the Club

MEND Press Release: Over 40 community organisations in Yorkshire call upon the Yorkshire County Cricket Club to investigate institutional racism within the Club

Categories: Latest News

Friday September 18 2020

MEND Press Release:

  • Over 40 faith-based, community, and equalities organisations have signed an open letter to Yorkshire County Cricket Club (YCCC) following serious allegations of racism.
  • According to Azeem Rafiq, who played for the club between 2008 and 2018, his experiences of racism at the club left him on the “brink of suicide” and he “lost faith in humanity” after his reports were ignored by the club.
  • Rana Naved-ul-Hasan, who represented the club in 2008 and 2009, also claims that he witnessed “systemic taunting” while playing for the club.
  • The open letter calls upon the Yorkshire County Cricket Club, the Yorkshire Cricket Board, and the English Cricket Board to:
    • Initiate an urgent root and branch investigation into allegations made by Rafiq, including an examination of racism at structural and institutional levels.
    • Implement a “Zero Tolerance” policy, such as those already adopted by other sports, to ensure that racism is addressed across all interactions between both members and supporters.
    • Work with mainstream grassroots organisations to develop educational and awareness programmes aimed at eliminating all forms of racism throughout the organisations themselves.

Dr Shazad Amin, CEO of MEND, says:

MEND is deeply troubled by these allegations and the YCCC must undertake a full inquiry into racism at all levels if it is to instil confidence within BAME communities. Institutions such as the YCCC have a duty to reflect the unifying spirit of sport, and thus must enforce a zero-tolerance policy towards racism, Islamophobia, and all other forms of prejudice. It is imperative that we do not allow the next generation of talented BAME cricketers to be dissuaded from participating fully in their clubs for fear of being targets of racist behaviour.”

END

Notes for Editors:

  • The open letter and list of signatories have been attached to this press release.
  • MEND is a community-funded organisation that seeks to encourage political, civic, and social engagement within British Muslim communities through empowering British Muslims to interact with political and media institutions effectively.
  • MEND’S IRU (Islamophobia Reporting Unit) works with victims of Islamophobia in both civil and criminal matters, ensuring a just resolution of matters.
  • For any enquiries, including information or interview requests, please contact: press@mend.org.uk or 0207 247 7707. 
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