Mary Gearin says women in rugby “deserve a bit of the attention that money could buy”. (World Rugby: Oisin Keniry)
Attn: Fox Sports
Cc: Mitch Fifield, Communications Minister
Dear Fox Sports,
Isn’t it great when there’s so much choice for pressies to give yourself at Christmas!
Back in May, you were given a handy $30 million of taxpayers’ money in the Budget.
It was to “support the broadcast of underrepresented sports on subscription television, including women’s sports, niche sports, and sports with a high level of community involvement and participation”.
And we’ve been waiting to see what you could spend it on. So many sports, so deserving of attention.
And we’ve been waiting.
An FOI request from the ABC couldn’t turn up any documentation from the Federal Government preceding the decision to hand out those millions, even though it involved taxpayer money given to a private company.
Then… thanks Santa! Rugby league last week, and, now, rugby union, have popped up with fully-fledged plan to launch women’s leagues next year. The women in those leagues certainly deserve a bit of the attention that money could buy.
We’re still waiting on word from the Government on what you actually need to do with that money, any accountability measures, benchmarks of success.
A spokesperson for Communications Minister Mitch Fifield has told us “the grant guidelines are close to being finalised and the Government expects to be in a position to make them public before the end of 2017”. So we have a couple of weeks.
So, are you able to tell us now what you will do with the money?
Otherwise, taxpayers will want to know what’s happened to their hard-earned cash. Because there are lots of good causes — many women’s and niche sports — who are due some attention. Even without any Christmas charity.