Ismail Dowd (left) – Former California Billiards District
The Cricket Board of England and Wales (ECB) has been accused by two former judges of institutionalised racism in recent allegations in sport.
John Holder, who participated in tests and international days, said it seemed more than suspicious that he had not received a response from the ECB when he offered to become a mentor.
Meanwhile, Ismail Daoud said he had heard racist remarks in front of senior ECB officials, which was not disputed.
The couple asked the Commission on Equality and Human Rights (EHRC) to conduct an independent inquiry to question the activities of organisations such as the ECB.
Former calibre Dowd, who played district cricket for Worcestershire, Glamorgan and Yorkshire before becoming an umpire, said he had absolutely no confidence in the ECB and the organisation was a disaster.
The last black, Asian and ethnic minority (BAME) referee on the ECB list was Vanburn Holder 28 years ago. There hasn’t been one since he retired in 2010.
The ECB representative told Sport: The current group of professional judges does not reflect the diversity of the ECB that we want to be.
We want to see more BAME representatives among our civil servants and we recognise that we still have a long way to go to achieve this.
The sport includes a person who used discriminatory language in the presence of civil servants, was dismissed, but is exempt from liability for misconduct.
Dowd, who was on the ECB’s reserve list and played first-class matches: If that language were used elsewhere, people would lose their jobs.
I have absolutely no confidence in the ECB. In fact, it’s a total waste and that’s why we need to investigate it. Do I want to be part of an organization that is chaos? No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.
In one of my performance reviews, I was told that I had to make an excellent judgement about who was the best fit.
The complaints we filed reveal institutionalised and structured racism, discrimination, nepotism, bullying and dishonesty that were part of our lives when we worked at the ECB.
Meanwhile, Holder says he raised an issue to which he received no response to his e-mail.
He was asked whether he thought there was institutionalised racism at the ECB: I have no reason to doubt.
The fact that several non-white referees have applied to become members of the First Class Referees group or to become mentors or liaison officers, but none of them has made progress in that direction.
Their accusations were made after Azim Rafiq exposed institutional racism in his former Yorkshire club, which opened an investigation.
And earlier this year former British drummer Michael Carberry said he expected nothing from the ECB in the fight against racism, which he said is widespread in the sport.
Mr. Dowd said: The ECB has installed systematic locking systems which will be maintained unless they are thoroughly examined.
We have a minimum representation of BAME cricket players, coaches, umpires/officials and managers. The list goes on and on. It comes from the lower levels. The barriers faced by Asians or blacks are much higher than those faced by non-BAM members.
Some of the stories that came out that year were awful. People don’t go out, don’t talk and don’t make it right. That is why we want the Committee on Equal Opportunities and Human Rights to look at sport in general, but cricket is our sport.
We call on the IHRC to examine the ECB’s structures and launch an investigation. They have to challenge organizations like the ECB to act, we don’t need words, we have a lot of words, we want action.
In its statement at the beginning of this year, the ECB commissioned a fully independent inquiry into the allegations against the individual, and although these allegations were not confirmed, the inquiry revealed areas where we need to make improvements and do more to be inclusive and diverse.
Under the supervision of the Executive Board, the ECB has now commissioned a study to examine how we can reform our approach to align management.
It will outline measures to improve our systems and processes to increase judicial diversity, inspire the next generation of judges and mentor staff, create a world-class judicial education programme and ensure a culture of inclusion and fairness throughout the judicial system.