The return of Colin Graves to Yorkshire would “undermine the progress” the sport has made in opposition to racism and “make a mockery” of those that have suffered up to now, in line with the Sporting Equals charity.
Sporting Equals, which promotes ethnic range in UK Sport, has issued a strongly-worded open letter about Graves’ potential reinstatement at Headingley.
Graves was Yorkshire chair between 2012 and 2015, earlier than taking the identical position on the England and Wales Cricket Board, and heads a consortium in ongoing talks with the debt-ridden county.
The 75-year-old’s earlier Yorkshire tenure lined a part of a interval the place the membership have admitted costs of failing to deal with the systemic use of racist or discriminatory language.
For his half Graves denies information of any racist behaviour throughout his time however controversially steered there was “a lot of banter”.
Addressing their considerations to sports activities minister Stuart Andrew, the ECB, county cricket golf equipment and sports activities, Sporting Equals wrote: “Cricket has been making an effort to combat racism over the past few years.
“Since Azeem Rafiq publicly exposed the deep systemic problems the ECB, amongst others, have taken action to address these issues.
“However, the potential reinstatement of Colin Graves as chairman of Yorkshire County Cricket Club would undermine the progress made.
“His reinstatement would send a message that emboldens those who perpetuate the myth that racism is simply banter, that it is enough to pay lip service to policies and procedures.
“It would make a mockery of the suffering of ethnically diverse players across the country. It would be a rejection of the ICEC Report’s thorough investigation and well-considered conclusions. This progress must not be stunted.”
The organisation then requires a five-point plan to be adopted, beginning with an unbiased match and correct particular person take a look at for potential homeowners.
The different strategies embrace a disqualification course of “to rid the game of bad actors” and obligatory inclusivity coaching for these in management roles.
A spokesperson for the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) mentioned in response to the Sporting Equals letter: “Cricket must be open to everyone and the Government has consistently called for action to address the culture at Yorkshire County Cricket Club following the behaviour at the county.
“Following the publication of Cindy Butts’ (Independent Commission for Equity in Cricket) report, the England and Wales Cricket Board set out plans to deliver clear and sustained reform.
“It is vital the ECB deliver on their commitments, and that Yorkshire County Cricket Club continues to make the culture change needed.”
Rafiq, writing within the Observer over the weekend, appealed for sponsors to face in opposition to Graves.
He mentioned “There is still time for them to act, to leave now and stop Yorkshire stepping back in time and undoing what progress they have made in the past three years.”
Meanwhile Clive Efford, a member of the Culture, Media and Sport committee, instructed the PA information company final week that Graves’ return could be “a disaster for cricket” and a “retrograde step”.
Alex Sobel, the Labour MP for the Leeds North West constituency which incorporates Headingley, is known to have written to Yorkshire chair Harry Chathli final week expressing concern over the attainable return of Graves and requesting a gathering.
PA understands Yorkshire have accepted Sobel’s request to satisfy. The membership have been contacted for touch upon the Sporting Equals letter.