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Statement on ECB's action plan

The plan has been published following a meeting of all major cricket bodies.

26th November 2021

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has published an action plan agreed by all the major organisations in cricket in the wake of last week's testimony from Azeem Rafiq and subsequent allegations of racism within the game.

Representatives of the ECB, the Marylebone Cricket Club, the Professional Cricketers' Association, the National Counties Cricket Association, the First Class Counties, Women's Regional Hosts and the Recreational County Cricket met last week and today issued their collective plan of action - which includes a commitment to ensuring representative ethnic diversity and at least 30% female representation at board and leadership levels across the game by April 2022.

It also includes commitments to ensuring a minimum of 20% gender diversity and an appropriate level of ethnic diversity across coaching roles by 2025, and to removing barriers in elite pathways.

More information about the plan can be found on the ECB's website.

Following its publication, our chief executive Tim Hollingsworth has issued the following statement.

It reads: "Sport England welcomes the list of actions agreed and published today by the ECB and other cricket authorities.

"They are the first step on the long journey needed to effectively tackle racism in the sport and address the structural and cultural issues that have so far prevented that. 

"The implementation now needs to match the intent and be swift, robust and thorough by all, and at all levels of the game. It is not enough to state intention, action needs to follow.

"We will be engaging with the ECB closely now to support effective delivery in some specific areas: improving the diversity of Board, administrative and coaching leadership; making talent pathways more accessible; and further helping the grassroots game to better understand, champion and implement inclusion. 

"Discussions continue with all organisations that we fund about the meaningful steps they are taking to eliminate all forms of discrimination in their sport.

"This week we, along with UK Sport, wrote to all national governing bodies to remind them of this responsibility.

"The ECB know that their action and commitment here will be central to our decisions on funding the sport in the future.  

"Sport is something that at its best is a powerful force for good that can bring us together. But unless it is safe, welcoming and empowering for everyone, that opportunity is lost."

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