RFL issue statement of support towards official following homophobic abuse

Following the clash with Leeds Rhinos and Huddersfield Giants officiated by Marcus Griffiths, the RFL issued a statement of support after the official suffered homophobic abuse online.

Griffith has been in charge of the clash between Huddersfield and Leeds where there had been a number of difficult decisions namely a drop goal that caused a lot of discussion.

However, this is no excuse for homophobic abuse and the RFL have issued a statement stamping out the actions of those few who have let the game down.

“The Rugby Football League stands behind Marcus Griffiths, one of the full-time panel of elite match officials, as he highlights the disgraceful, homophobic abuse he has received on social media.

“Tony Sutton, the RFL Chief Executive, has written to all professional clubs today stressing the importance of observing the sport’s Tackle It policy and Respect code of conduct in supporting match officials.”

“All in the sport will condemn the appalling abuse which Marcus Griffiths has received on social media,” Sutton explained.

“We will provide support to Marcus through Rugby League Cares, and have worked with him in alerting the relevant authorities, whether digital or law-enforcement.

“We would urge all involved in the sport, whether at clubs or even in the media, to consider the consequences of their words and actions.

“Homophobic abuse is a hate crime and punishable by law. We want to be clear that any kind of discriminatory abuse is not welcome in our sport, and we will take the strongest possible action against perpetrators who can be identified.

“Our Match Officials work under intense scrutiny and pressure. We owe it to them as a governing body, and also as a sport, to support them at all times.”