AFL confirms a ‘number of participants’ for independent Hawthorn cultural review


Several First Nations families whose stories formed Hawthorn’s internal cultural review will take part in the AFL’s independent investigation, but the league has denied striking any deals with them to be involved.

The AFL has confirmed a “number” of participants would cooperate with the investigation, led by Bernard Quinn KC.

The announcement comes less than 24 hours after a group of Indigenous families called for the AFL to admit to its own failings before they take part in the investigation.

In a joint open letter directed to the AFL Commission and league boss Gillon McLachlan on Friday, the families wrote they want to “tell our truths” in a “culturally safe environment”.

The AFL followed that up with a statement of its own on Saturday.

“The AFL has not come to any separate agreements with any participants in relation to the terms on which they take part in the investigation,” the league statement read.

“The work by the four-member panel has already begun and will continue to work with the various participants.

“The AFL is committed to working together as an industry to coordinate a wider response that ensures we have a culturally safe environment across all our clubs and within the AFL industry.

“It is important to note that the wider industry response that was previously announced is a separate piece of work that will continue to be worked on by the AFL and, while it will be informed by the panel’s work, it is not part of the independent investigation process.”


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