Cricket Wales are proud to have received exemplary rankings from the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) in respect of our commitment to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.
As part of the funding contract (County Partnership Agreement) between the ECB and its partners and members, the ECB seeks detailed evidence to assess counties’ performance and ranks them annually against a number of tiered Standards relating to Cricket, Governance, Operations and Development.
Counties are ranked in one of the following groups:
- Leading Organisation
- On Track
- Behind Schedule
At the recent annual review meeting, ECB’s County Partnership Agreement (CPA) Assessments for both Cricket Wales and Glamorgan, in respect of EDI, have resulted in an overall “Leading Organisation” ranking, with specific commendation for:
- EDI Education across workforce, professional players, and recreational volunteers
- Leadership accountability including EDI Action Plans and Executive Objectives
- Cricket Wales was additionally identified as leading on its Board diversity and Glamorgan for its work on ensuring a diverse and accessible talent pathway
ECB offered the following specific feedback;
“It is evident that a great deal of time and effort went into creating your EDI plan. It is a comprehensive document, which provides further context and the political and social landscape in Wales. The plan ties together the recreational and professional game well.”
“It’s admirable how transparent you have been with sharing data around participation and investment in cricket within Wales. This is something that other Counties should take note of”.
“We applaud Cricket Wales for having led the way in undertaking significant work around EDI for many years before others within cricket, including its focus on women’s and girls’ cricket, and achieving Equality Standard for Sport accreditation.”
In addition to the publishing of the first ever joint EDI Plan between the two organisations (summarised below) in March 2022, we have also co-hosted 2 annual workshops on EDI, inviting other sporting organisations, experts and community members to Sophia Gardens to discuss key issues and aim to raise collective awareness and standards in the sector.
In specific response to the ECB’s 12 Point Plan to combat allegations of racism in cricket, originally published in November 2021, Welsh cricket has also:
1 Adopted and supported a standardised approach to reporting, investigating, and responding to complaints, allegations, and whistleblowing across the game.
- Fully promoted the aims of the Independent Commission for Equity in Cricket (ICEC).
- Provided and promoted ongoing EDI training for all those who work in cricket, including all staff, volunteers, recreational club officials, umpires, directors, and coaches; Proactively engaged with Investors in Diversity and Diverse Cymru, in addition to ECB-provided training.
- Undertaken a full review of dressing room culture in the professional game.
- Delivered professional player and coach education, addressing any gaps identified through the dressing room review.
- Continued pre-existing action to aid progress people from diverse backgrounds (especially South Asian, Black and less privileged youngsters) into pathways and professional teams, through measures to address i) talent identification and scouting, ii) education and diversity of coaches and iii) targeted support programmes for players from diverse or under-privileged backgrounds, including Regional Pathway bursaries.
- Supported the full-scale review into the detection, enforcement, and sanctions against discriminatory and abusive crowd behaviour at Sophia Gardens.
- Delivered actions to ensure Sophia Gardens is accessible and welcoming to all, including provision of accessible seating, food and beverage offering catering to all faiths and cultures, and the availability of facilities such as multi-faith rooms and alcohol-free zones.
- Supported and promoted education in recreational cricket to ensure players, volunteers and coaches understand and champion inclusion and diversity in the game.
- Achieved/Exceeded Board diversity (gender and ethnicity) targets and increased diversity across the wider organisations.
- Ubiquitously adopted fairer recruitment processes, through measures including open appointment processes for all roles and the use of balanced and diverse panels to assess interviews.
- Every senior executive at both organisations now owns personal EDI objectives as part of their annual performance targets, driving leadership accountability.
Cricket Wales CEO, Leshia Hawkins, commenting on the report and ECB's remarks, said, “While we are extremely proud of being independently identified as a Leading Organisation in this critical space, our work to make cricket the most diverse and inclusive sport in Wales will never be complete.
“We know there is even more we can do to support the recreational game and volunteers to ensure people feel more confident in making cricket as welcoming as possible for all, and we remain totally committed to this journey and our responsibilities as guardians of the grassroots game in Wales.”
Cricket Wales is committed to continuous improvement and scrutiny of all our plans, actions and outcomes, and we will continue to report back on progress against our own targets and those set by the ECB, or that which may be required in the future by other stakeholders. Further information on our long-standing commitment to EDI can be found here.