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The Australian Football Federation pledged this Wednesday to investigate all reports of sexual harassment and intimidation as a result of the cases of two former players of the national team.
The answer came after the lead Lisa De Vanna, who made 150 appearances for the Australian side before retiring from football in September, revealed this week in an Australian newspaper that During the beginning of her career, she was the victim of sexual harassment and intimidation by other teammates.
“Have I been sexually harassed? Yes. Have I been bullied? Yes. Ostracism? Yes. Have I seen things that have made me uncomfortable? Yes”, said the second top scorer of the national team, 36 years old, insisting that “when I was young I did not know how to approach this (…) but it continues to happen at all levels and it is time to speak.”
The athlete assured in an interview with the newspapers of the News group, published on Tuesday, which the incidents occurred in the showers and locker room, where she was thrown to the ground and other colleagues rubbed with her.
“I have witnessed: women protecting women who abuse women. Players protecting veteran players who abuse young players. Organizations that protect entrants and players who abuse players. Abuse is abuse, ”the former footballer wrote on her Twitter profile at the beginning of the month.
In addition to The Vanna, who asked to punish those responsible for this type of conduct, the former player Rhali Dobson, who retired last March, He also reported having been a victim of sexual harassment.
“It is a thing that still happens, even at the highest levels, and Until it is addressed, nothing will change29-year-old Dobson points out in the same article.
Following these statements, the australian federation indicated today, in a statement, that it maintains “Zero tolerance for any behavior that violates the rules and the values ”of the athletes.
“We ask everyone to present their accusations in a formal way to proceed with a thorough investigation,” says the agency, encouraging From Vanna and Dobson to report through the “appropriate channels”.
The entity also points out that had no knowledge of the incidents, after having previously met with The Vanna.
This scandal of alleged sexual harassment and a toxic culture in women’s football adds to similar accusations in other disciplines such as swimming, hockey and gymnastics in Australia.
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Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.