Rugby Football Union

Not all Poms are big girl’s blouses

The poor wee diddumses who want to ban tackling in Rugby are getting a bit of pressure.

Campaigners seeking a ban on tackling in school rugby have been on the receiving end of a backlash which included homophobic and sexist abuse, while one supporter claims that he was told not to attend a key event this weekend.

In what he views as a punitive measure after speaking this week in support of the proposed ban, Adam White, a board member of the England Rugby Football?Schools Union (ERFSU), said he had been asked not to attend a prestigious rugby schools event this weekend at the Allianz Stadium, the home of Saracens, where he was due to act as a safeguarding officer.

White told the Guardian on Wednesday that restrictions along the lines of those proposed in an open letter signed by 70 doctors, health experts and academics were the only way to keep young people safe.

He said: ?I am extremely disappointed that there already is the closing down of discussion in the RFU [Rugby Football Union] of some voices. It is quite evident that they are trying to lead the narrative on this and are perhaps not happy to listen to opposition.?

The RFU said White had offered to step down from the safeguarding duties, adding: ?This was not instigated by the ERFSU or the RFU. There is no action presently being taken against Adam as a result of his media interviews this week. He is free to express his opinions, although it should be emphasised that he is not speaking on behalf of the ERSFU board.?

While the campaign has sparked passionate debate, a lead signatory to the letter said some of the criticism he had received included homophobic abuse. ? Read more »