The culture of bullying and abuse at Wests Tigers..


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    Revealed: The culture of bullying and abuse at Wests Tigers

    James Phelps, The Daily Telegraph
    November 6, 2016 5:00am


    A SHOCKING culture of fear, bullying and harassment is threatening to rip the Wests Tigers apart.

    A damning report on the Club alleges at least two NRL players have considered committing suicide, while others spoke of being bullied to the point of tears.

    The Sunday Telegraph can reveal the NRL club has been accused of having a “total lack of concern for player welfare’’ in a bombshell welfare report conducted by the Rugby League Players Association (RLPA).

    The scathing report was conducted by the RLPA last year after several Tigers players alerted the organisation about their “major concerns about player welfare and wellbeing’’ at the club.

    The eight page document obtained by the Sunday Telegraph contains a series of scathing comments from unidentified players.

    The report is scathing regarding the club’s treatment of players.
    One player made the alarming claim that some of his teammates were “thinking about ending it’’ and another accused the club of failing to improve player welfare after the suicide death of prop Mosese Fotuiaka in 2013.

    “Having already had a player take their own life at this club I am scared it will happen again,’’ said one of the players surveyed by the RLPA.

    “This club hasn’t learned anything from what happened with Mosese. To be honest I think it has gotten worse. I know two players this year (2015) who have thought about suicide. The thought of it makes me sick.’’

    The Wests Tigers this week confirmed the authenticity of the report and admitted to having obtained the damning document in which players claim to being bullied by club staff.

    “Players are bullied to the point that after the game on of the boys was in tears,’’ an unnamed player said in the report.

    “Injured players are ignored by senior coaching staff and some boys fear getting injured because they think they will never make it back into first grade,” the player said.

    “If boys have off-field issues they are treated like shit. And get this the head coach doesn’t speak to players for weeks at time.’’

    The document also alleges the Tigers ignored the welfare of former captain Robbie Farah, who left the club this year after a widely reported feud with coach Jason Taylor.

    The opening page of the report — titled notes — alleges the Tigers were only concerned about the club’s image during the long running feud between the captain and coach that finally ended when Farah quit his contract with Wests to join South Sydney.

    “The situation with Robbie Farah and the meeting I attended highlighted a total lack of concern for player welfare issues from the Club,’’ the report states.

    The bitter feud between Taylor and Farah ended when the former skipper left the club.
    “From the Chairwomen down it seemed the club had no real issue with the way Robbie’s situation was affecting him personally, however the Chairwomen noted that having this played out in public was affecting the clubs image. It was evident Robbie had note been afforded any welfare support from the club.’’

    The report was written in October 2015 by a former RLPA welfare officer after the annual RLPA “State of Play’’ survey contained alarming remarks about the culture at the Wests Tigers.

    “Players told me about their teammates contemplating self harm,’’ wrote the former RLPA employee.

    “Others have lost confidence and self esteem.’’

    The nature of the comments made by several players in the survey prompted the RLPA to write the scathing report.

    “Normally such a paper would not be provided,’’ continued the author.

    “However issues relating to player welfare and wellbeing are of a serious nature, the welfare department at the RLPA has documented all issues so that a plan to improve can be developed.

    The report raised serious concerns about the treatment of injured players.

    “I was injured this year,’’ said a player.

    The report details other players could take their own lives like Fotuiaka.
    “And for the weeks that I was out and in rehab the head coach never contacted me once. He totally ignored me and when I was fit to play he had a go at me for not putting the team first by being lazy in my rehab.’’

    Several players also made scathing comments about Taylor, who was sacked by his former club South Sydney for a “Mad Monday’’ altercation with forward David Fa’alogo

    “If I stayed at the club for one more season with JT as coach I would have bashed him like David Fa’alogo did,’’ said a former player.

    “Or I would have done something to myself.’’

    Tigers CEO Justin Pascoe yesterday declined to comment on the report, while the NRL said they had not received a copy of the document.

    The report was scathing towards coach Jason Taylor.
    “We have not seen that report as it was prepared specifically for the club,” an NRL spokesman said.

    NRL CEO Todd Greenberg said the NRL’s welfare department had done a lot of work with the Wests Tigers in the 12 months since the report was compiled.

    “Naturally, if we can provide any further support to players or the club we will do so,” Mr Greenberg said.

    The Tigers issued a media release on Friday announcing the club’s appointment of former player Dene Halatua to a welfare role.

    The release came just hours after the club learned the Sunday Telegraph intended to publish the report.

    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/sport/nrl/teams/tigers/the-culture-of-bullying-and-neglect-that-is-tearing-the-wests-tigers-apart/news-story/1e91b42e6f9e31be9382e63d0535fc93



  • this doesn’t look good… 😦



  • Upsets me immensely, we the club need money and with that get a chosen board in place



  • Proudly brought to you by Sam Ayoub and his lawyer Levick (who thinks people like Zane Tetevano and John Hopoate are fine upstanding citizens who’ve been mistreated" who produced the “report”. NRL player surveys regularly indicate players from all clubs know other players who have committed suicide.

    The club has also admitted that they have mad a lot of changes in the last year. In fact only yesetrday “the appointment of Halatau follows news that Wests Tigers were ranked second in the NRL for its Player Wellbeing and Education programs this season” - so our club currently is ranked number 2in the NRL by the NRL.

    As for Farah - I am sooo happy every day that he is gone from this club and hope he never returns



  • This^^^
    Ayoubs dirty little DNA is all over this. It’s the same narrative.

    Scum of the highest order.



  • Why can so many unnamed people sink the boot into the club… Pretty cowardly… If you’re going to have a go at the club or coach - own it… Don’t hide

    There’s two sides to every story and here we’re reading one.

    Reminds me of Ayoub style



  • I think the best thing you can do is ignore this type of senseless uneducated type of media. I hardly read the article. If it was coming from SMH another story.



  • This makes me think of a few things:

    1. Its not good if players GENUINELY feel like this.
    2. We all know who has their fingerprints all over this.
    3. I honestly think it would be similar at most, if not all clubs.

    And finally, the club doesn’t care about player welfare etc - but……
    “We have not seen that report as it was prepared specifically for the club,” an NRL spokesman said.

    So the club instigates and prepares the report outside of the requirements of the NRL, yet they don’t care? Makes no sense.



  • This is one sided old news that takes no consideration of a year or so of change, so basically rubbish.


  • Banned

    @Boonboon2:

    Proudly brought to you by Sam Ayoub and his lawyer Levick (who thinks people like Zane Tetevano and John Hopoate are fine upstanding citizens who’ve been mistreated" who produced the “report”. NRL player surveys regularly indicate players from all clubs know other players who have committed suicide.

    The club has also admitted that they have mad a lot of changes in the last year. In fact only yesetrday “the appointment of Halatau follows news that Wests Tigers were ranked second in the NRL for its Player Wellbeing and Education programs this season” - so our club currently is ranked number 2in the NRL by the NRL.

    As for Farah - I am sooo happy every day that he is gone from this club and hope he never returns

    Fans like you sabotage this club.



  • Sound like someone has an axe to grind with the club. How many clubs has the RLPA looked at?



  • @Swordy:

    This makes me think of a few things:

    1. Its not good if players GENUINELY feel like this.
    2. We all know who has their fingerprints all over this.
    3. I honestly think it would be similar at most, if not all clubs.

    And finally, the club doesn’t care about player welfare etc - but……
    “We have not seen that report as it was prepared specifically for the club,” an NRL spokesman said.

    So the club instigates and prepares the report outside of the requirements of the NRL, yet they don’t care? Makes no sense.

    I don’t think that it was prepared for the club. It was requested by someone (or their representatives) at the club who had an axe to grind.

    Listening to some of Robbie’s interviews last year it sounds like he knew what this was going to say.



  • This article is no surprise the NRL need to step in as its further than one player with an axe to grind.
    You can’t have this sort of thing going on irrespective of suspected agendas. Its multiple players so it needs to be taken seriously. Anyone threatening self harm or doing harm at my business would by straight to the Employee Program fully paid and out of the work environment until they get better.





  • This isn’t solely a WTs problem as most would know

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/life/weekend-australian-magazine/rugby-league-suicides-is-the-nrl-doing-enough-for-its-young-players/news-story/681810f42bb5274a30751a9fa9cacaf1


    .

    …… The number of young players dying by their own hand reflects the issues facing Australia’s wider society, where suicide is the leading cause of death for those aged between 15 and 44. In 2013, more than a quarter of deaths of males in the 15-19 and 20-24 age groups were due to suicide (34.8 per cent and 31 per cent respectively), according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics. But while the rate of suicide in rugby league may be no higher than the national ­average, their high profile is drawing attention to the welfare of young players, especially those who haven’t quite made it to elite level…


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