29 June, 2023

The Green Park Foundation & Spirit of Cricket support the recommendations laid out by the ICEC following findings of discrimination across cricket

On 27th June 2023, the Independent Commission for Equity in Cricket (ICEC) called for urgent reform to address deep rooted and widespread institutional, structural, and interpersonal discrimination across the game. This follows the release of their landmark report, Holding Up A Mirror To Cricket, which findings included a failure to tackle racism, female marginalisation and class barriers across cricket.

Among the 44 key recommendations set out to improve the games culture, the ICEC advocated for a more meritocratic, inclusive, and accountable talent pathway structure, an overhaul of the professional women players’ pay structure, action plans to revive Black cricket and a game-wide strategy to remove class barriers. These recommendations are welcomed by The Green Park Foundation and Spirit of Cricket, both of which have championed cricket as a tool for greater inclusivity both in sport and society.

Following a briefing to the Spirit of Cricket and Mohammed Sadiq Patel of the Green Park Foundation by the ICEC, The Green Park Foundation and Spirit of Cricket have requested to meet with the England and Wales Cricket Board’s (ECB’s) Deputy CEO and Sub-Group and to support the implementation of the report’s recommendations.  

The Green Park Foundation commented: ‘We are grateful to those responsible for the report including Ian Watmore, ex-Chair of the ECB, Cindy Butts the Chair of the ICEC, and all those who contributed in providing their lived experiences to the ICEC.

“We understand that the recommendations of the ICEC will be discussed with those involved in professional and recreational cricket and a consultation process will be led by the ECB Deputy Chief Executive Officer and a sub-group including the ECB Chair, Chief Executive and board members. We only ask that the governance and investment portions of the report are open to external scrutiny by those with the diversity expertise and lived experience to challenge the crickets bias and groupthink so eloquently detailed in the reports 317 pages.”

 “We believe that the Deputy CEO and the ECB Sub-Group should meet with us as a matter of urgency to ensure that, within the three-month window to action, the recommendations in the report are adequately considered and implemented with defined measurements of impact, sustainable behavioural change and the development of new values and expertise throughout the ECB institutions to ensure no additional investment is wasted.”

“The structure and nature of cricket means it has a natural head start in becoming the nation’s most inclusive sport and a country-wide engine for driving social mobility, therefore, we welcome the recommendations laid out by the ICEC. With our colleagues the Spirit of Cricket Group, consisting of leaders from the South Asian, African and Caribbean, Jewish, LGBT and Climate Protection groups, we believe we can work with together with the ECB to drive real and sustainable change for greater inclusion in the game of cricket.”

The Green Park Foundation supports grassroot initiatives to improve the lives of young people and create more sustainable, equitable and inclusive environment and is the social and philanthropic arm of global talent advisory and diversity and inclusion experts Green Park. On 2nd June 2022, The Green Park Foundation launched The Unity Statement, bringing together leading faith, community and sports figures to join forces in a campaign to drive out discrimination and promote unity in cricket, as pictured above. 

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