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Disability Discrimination Commissioner joins Play by the Rules

Disability Disability Rights
A young person plays soccer on an open field alone, with the sun setting behind them.

Disability Discrimination Commissioner Dr Ben Gauntlett will join the management committee of Play by the Rules, the national program to make grass roots sports safe, fair and inclusive.

Dr Gauntlett joins his Australian Human Rights Commission colleague, Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins (co-chair), and South Australia’s Equal Opportunity Commissioner Dr Niki Vincent representing the Australian Council of Human Rights Authorities on the committee. 

Dr Gauntlett said he was pleased to join Play by the Rules and was particularly keen to support the program’s leading inclusion initiatives for people with disability.

“Sport is an integral aspect of Australian society. Whether participating or attending, many Australians love sport. It is important we make sport as inclusive as possible,” Dr Gauntlett said.

“In my role as Disability Discrimination Commissioner, I’m delighted to join Play by the Rules and to ensure people with disability can participate in sport and sporting organisations in a meaningful way.”

Play by the Rules is a collaboration between the Australian Human Rights Commission, the Australian Council of Human Rights Authorities (ACHRA), Sport Australia, all state and territory departments of sport and recreation, the NSW Office of the Children's Guardian and the Anti-Discrimination Board of NSW.  Sport Integrity Australia will join as a member from July 1, 2020.

Ms Jenkins said the management committee welcomed the appointment of Dr Gauntlett.

“Ben brings a passion for sport, an understanding of the importance of sport in the community and expertise in promoting inclusion for people with disability, which will be incredibly valuable to the work of Play by the Rules,” Ms Jenkins said.

Ms Jenkins thanked former committee member Megan Mitchell for her work, first as NSW Commissioner for Children and Young People and then during her term as National Children’s Commissioner.

Play by the Rules has been recognised by the Royal Commission into Institutional Child Sexual Abuse and the Wood Review into Sport Integrity as a leading initiative in ensuring child safety and safeguarding the integrity of sport at the community level.

This week, Play by the Rules launched a new campaign featuring some of Australia's leading sports stars across multiple sports encouraging people to come together and play by the rules. 

Ms Jenkins said Play by the Rules’ digital platform was a valuable tool in keeping community sport connected during the COVID-19 pandemic, with on-field play suspended.

In early May Play by the Rules held its first in a series of post COVID-19 community sport forums to discuss the recovery of community sport from the effects of the pandemic. The next forum features former Olympian Margot Foster AM and will be held on Friday, May 15. More information can be found here.

Media contact
Georgia Waters
0428 263 830