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Richard Scudamore Keeps Job But Calls Grow For Independent Enquiry

Tue 20th May 2014 | Football Governance

Richard Scudamore will retain his position as Chief Executive of the Premier League following a meeting by the League’s member club chairmen on Monday.

Scudamore’s position had been called into question following the revelation he’d sent sexist remarks in emails leaked by a former personal assistant.

Following the meeting, the Premier League said it had acted on the findings of an inclusion advisory board that there was no discrimination in its working environment and had accepted Scudamore's apology.

"Responses from many women in employment at the Premier League, and extensive consultations with others, establish that there is no climate of disrespect of women in the workplace,” a Premier League statement said.

“This is an important consideration, one that is vital to forming a view as to whether the emails in question reflect a wider problem."

"With these findings in mind the clubs accepted the Chief Executive’s genuine and sincere apology. They also accepted his undertaking to take active steps to prevent a recurrence.
"In these circumstances and in the light of a previously unblemished record over 15 years of service to the Premier League, the clubs resolved unanimously that no further disciplinary action is required or justified."

However, Women in Football, the network of professional women working in and around the football industry said it was disappointed by the decision.

“Women in Football is disappointed that the Premier League has missed a significant opportunity to demonstrate a strong commitment to equality in the workplace. In not recommending action - in any form whatsoever - it will be extremely difficult for women working in the industry to feel reassured that this issue has been adequately addressed,” read the statement released by the organisation.

“With such evidence of sexism in the football workplace, we feel it is irresponsible for any organisation to dismiss this issue without following good practice and taking independent expert advice. 

“We renew our call for an independent enquiry into this matter. We believe it is imperative that any conclusions reached by the Premier League are done so through the means of an objective audit in which employees are given the opportunity to express their views anonymously to an independent body.

“We are additionally concerned that the "extensive consultations" with women in the football industry, cited in the Premier League's statement yesterday, did not extend to Women in Football, despite our position in representing over 1,000 women working across the sport. 

“Women in Football are committed to helping the Premier League champion and support women in the workplace. We also recognise, and welcome, Richard Scudamore's statement of apology and pledge to uphold equality in his remit as Chief Executive. 

Image: Action Images / John Marsh Livepic

Posted by: Aaron Gourley 

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