Ali Brigginshaw denounces the frightening state of collective bargaining negotiations

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TO UPDATE: NRL chief Andrew Abdo has spoken out about the ‘facts’ surrounding the ongoing dispute between the players and the governing body.

It comes after Broncos skipper Ali Brigginshaw was the latest to speak out against the disastrous state of the NRL’s collective bargaining agreement (CBA), with negotiations threatening to disrupt both the men’s and women’s competitions.

In December, the NRL announced the NRL and NRLW salary caps for the 2023 season, with both male and female players receiving record pay.

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However, while the Rugby League Players Association is still negotiating a new CBA with the NRL, the group criticized the governing body for the “inappropriate” timing of the announcement.

While player salaries are an important part of the NRL’s ABC, the agreement addresses other important issues, including funds for post-retirement injuries, private health insurance, maternity leave and the revenue share percentage.

Speaking of SEN Breakfast with Pat Welsh and Ian Healy, Brigginshaw said she has not set foot on a pitch since Australia won the Rugby World Cup final because it is too dangerous to attend training without a completed CBA.

“We just need contracts to prepare for the NRLW season because at the moment we don’t have that,” she said.

“I haven’t been on a field since the World Cup final because I don’t want to risk injury.

“We are so behind. It’s like that every year. Then, a week or two before we start, we sort things out and that creates tremendous pressure.

“We already have to combine jobs to play rugby league let alone fight every battle and then getting what you get is not enough. That is why we need a CBA to get rid of that stress.”

On Tuesday evening, Abdo took to the Wide World of Sports 2GB radio to give his version of events.

“There’s been a lot of talk about it and not a lot of facts,” Abdo said.

“We really respect the value players add to the game. We looked at different ways to complete the ABC.

“Almost two weeks ago, we made an offer… $1.3 billion over a five-year cycle, a 37% increase for players, or nearly $367 million more than in the first round. previous cycle.

“We really thought about how to maximize distribution to players.

“The Commission prioritized clubs and players and we made sure to offer the players the most attractive offer possible.”

Brigginshaw argued that the biggest issue in getting the deal off the ground, not the wage agreements, was the policy that turned out to be.

“It’s mostly the policy, not the money,” she said.

“It’s the support structure. They say we have to pay for our own insurance and it’s about $3,500 a year. Last year they used our money to pay for it, but now they say ‘we won’t’, we won’t pay for that’.”

With that in mind, Brigginshaw was asked who should do it when she needs surgery for a sports injury.

“It’s the unknown,” she said.

“Some clubs will look after you, but they can turn around and say, ‘Hey, you don’t have a contract, find another help’.

“That’s the scary thing. You can ask, but they have the right not to pay your contract. It is a difficult place and the girls have a hard time with that.”

Brigginshaw also said the players saw no money from major sponsors supporting the NRLW.

“[NRL CEO] Andrew (Abdo) says he’s on board, but I think there are people wondering what we make,” Brigginshaw said.

“We want long-term contracts. We want annual contracts, but there are people who say we don’t deserve that.

“We have brought in a big sponsor and have a priority in women’s football, but their money is not going to women’s football. A large bank has joined us and we see nothing of that money. It has no meaning to me.”

As things stand, Brigginshaw isn’t convinced the ordeal will be over any time soon – even if he says the men’s season won’t go ahead without a deal in good standing.

“We thought we were there, but we took a step back. We know they can come to the party. I don’t know what’s holding them back, but as a group of players we are more united,” she said.

“They think the men just turn around and play, but they all hold their own. It’s going to be a hairy few weeks.”

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