Infotainment Factory: Folau makes big decision on rugby sacking

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Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Folau makes big decision on rugby sacking


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Israel Folau will challenge his sacking over a homophobic social media outburst, Rugby Australia confirmed on Wednesday.

Folau was given 48 hours to either accept the termination of his $4 million contract or request a code of conduct hearing, and has opted for the latter.

It has been reported that Folau will argue that Rugby Australia did not put specific social media clauses in his new deal, signed in February, and that he did not deliberately vilify any individual; that he was just quoting the bible.

The Wallabies star has chosen to fight his termination despite condemnation at all levels of the game, including a declaration from Test coach Michael Cheika that he would not select the fullback.

"Israel has responded formally today to request a Code of Conduct hearing which, under the circumstances, was not an unexpected outcome. We will now work to confirm a date for the hearing as soon as possible," RA chief executive Raelene Castle said in a statement.

"After the date for the hearing is confirmed Rugby Australia and the NSW Rugby Union will make no further comment on the matter until the Code of Conduct process has concluded."

DECISION WILL EITHER FINISH FOLAU OR CASTLE

Either Folau or Castle will be finished in Australian rugby after the attempted sacking of the Wallabies star is over, former Test player Peter FitzSimons says.

An absurd worst-case scenario looms if Folau somehow manages to remain in rugby: that he plays park football or remains inactive while being paid $1 million, given that the Waratahs and Wallabies have indicated he will not be selected.

Folau said in an Instagram outburst that gays would go to hell and also attacked transsexual people in a Twitter post.

Castle said that she had repeatedly warned Folau about vilifying LGBTIQ people after a near-identical social media incident last year. She said that Folau had breached his contract by again attacking homosexual people.

Yet a News Corp report claims that only after Folau re-signed with Rugby Australia for another four years did officials try to have social media clauses inserted in his deal.

Folau refused to go back on the initial agreement and Rugby Australia had no choice but to submit.

The lack of a social media clause will play a huge role Folau’s defence and will call into question the re-signing process put in place by Castle.

It's expected Folau will argue that he never deliberately vilified any individual because of their sexual preference and was just quoting the Bible.

The case could set a precedent in Australian sport and workplace law.

If Folau wins the case, lawyers say other Rugby Australia employees who are offended by his posts could also take action.

Israel Folau will challenge his sacking over a homophobic social media outburst, Rugby Australia confirmed on Wednesday.

Folau was given 48 hours to either accept the termination of his $4 million contract or request a code of conduct hearing, and has opted for the latter.

It has been reported that Folau will argue that Rugby Australia did not put specific social media clauses in his new deal, signed in February, and that he did not deliberately vilify any individual; that he was just quoting the bible.

The Wallabies star has chosen to fight his termination despite condemnation at all levels of the game, including a declaration from Test coach Michael Cheika that he would not select the fullback.

"Israel has responded formally today to request a Code of Conduct hearing which, under the circumstances, was not an unexpected outcome. We will now work to confirm a date for the hearing as soon as possible," RA chief executive Raelene Castle said in a statement.

"After the date for the hearing is confirmed Rugby Australia and the NSW Rugby Union will make no further comment on the matter until the Code of Conduct process has concluded."

DECISION WILL EITHER FINISH FOLAU OR CASTLE

Either Folau or Castle will be finished in Australian rugby after the attempted sacking of the Wallabies star is over, former Test player Peter FitzSimons says.

An absurd worst-case scenario looms if Folau somehow manages to remain in rugby: that he plays park football or remains inactive while being paid $1 million, given that the Waratahs and Wallabies have indicated he will not be selected.

Folau said in an Instagram outburst that gays would go to hell and also attacked transsexual people in a Twitter post.

Castle said that she had repeatedly warned Folau about vilifying LGBTIQ people after a near-identical social media incident last year. She said that Folau had breached his contract by again attacking homosexual people.

Yet a News Corp report claims that only after Folau re-signed with Rugby Australia for another four years did officials try to have social media clauses inserted in his deal.

Folau refused to go back on the initial agreement and Rugby Australia had no choice but to submit.

The lack of a social media clause will play a huge role Folau’s defence and will call into question the re-signing process put in place by Castle.

It's expected Folau will argue that he never deliberately vilified any individual because of their sexual preference and was just quoting the Bible.

The case could set a precedent in Australian sport and workplace law.

If Folau wins the case, lawyers say other Rugby Australia employees who are offended by his posts could also take action.

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