Netball Australia has devised a “declaration of commitment” to improving Indigenous representation and diversity in the sport.
Super Netball came under fire recently for using the competition’s only Indigenous player, Jemma Mi Mi, in promotions for their Indigenous round, only for the Queensland Firebirds to not play her.
There have only been two Indigenous players – Marcia Ella-Duncan and Sharon Finnan-White – in the national team, and none since the 1990s.
The former Diamonds have been vocal about the lack of action by Netball Australia, which prompted the review into the sport’s lack of diversity and the declaration, announced on Tuesday.
While participation rates show 4% of the netball community is Indigenous, this does not translate to elite levels.
The “declaration of commitment” is a pledge from a coalition of 20 of netball’s peak organisations to take significant action to break down the barriers that have prevented Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander players, coaches, umpires and administrators from flourishing in the sport.
Ella-Duncan and Finnan-White, along with Stacey Campton and Ali Tucker-Munro, will play a key leadership role.
The early phases of the “declaration” will focus on understanding further the experiences of players, coaches, umpires and administrators in the system. Tracking and reporting of this will then be a foundation of a national strategy to be announced next April.