Despite Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s ‘no jab, no play’ policy, the NRL has decided in favour of players who object to getting a flu shot on religious, medical or conscientious grounds.
Earlier today, Minister for Home Affairs Peter Dutton urged the NRL to make it mandatory that players receive flu shots leading up to the season restart. The Commonwealth Government made an exemption to travel bans for NRL players coming from New Zealand, which Dutton argues was impliedly contingent upon the NRL making safe health-related decisions.
“The conditions were obvious and the commitments were made by the NRL before a decision was made to allow them to go ahead,” Dutton said.
“We provided support, obviously, for the players to come from New Zealand, and we did that based on the health advice.
“And the health advice was based on the commitments given by the NRL.
“So I think it’s pretty clear cut.”
Dutton also said that refusing to receive a flu shot on religious grounds is unacceptable.
“We shouldn’t give any credibility to people that preach what is religion for some, for a small minority, because it’s dangerous,” he said.
“There are lots of young people out there who look to these players as role models, as heroes in their lives, and they shouldn’t be hearing these messages. I think that’s an important part of the discussion as well.
“But the commitments have been made by the players, by the administrators, and they should be adhered to.”