Thursday, January 12, 2006

Westpac doesn't like discrimination either

While I've been venting my spleen about the attempt to evict two women from a cricket match for kissing, Tony Milne of I See Red has been taking action. Focusing on the comment from Westpac Stadium Trust chief executive David Gray that he would instruct security staff "to intervene as a matter of policy", Tony has been urging people to target the sponsors and complain directly to Westpac Bank. And it's worked; Westpac is now sending out a grovelling apology to those who emailed them:

Westpac apologises for the offence you have felt at Mr Gray's remarks, which were made in the context of recent crowd disturbances at the stadium and the extent to which such disturbances may have been a distraction from the sporting action on the field.

We have discussed the matter with Mr Gray, and he agrees that his comments were inappropriate, do not reflect Westpac 'policy' in sponsorship or any other area, and were likely to give rise to the concerns you and others have expressed.

Westpac takes its commitment to corporate responsibility very seriously, including our commitment to treat all people equally – regardless of race, creed or sexual orientation.

It's good to see that they recognise they were in the wrong. At the same time, in this day and age, they shouldn't have needed the reminder.


I hear on the radio that these girls were actually "acting up" in such a way as to purposefully cause a disturbance and annoy the security.

as to
"We would not accept that that's something that should be broadcast on the screen. At a family stadium it's not appropriate and we would instruct our operators accordingly."

One could argue that shouldn't show it on the screen - afterall if I kissed my partner I probably wouldn't want it broardcast on the screen. That would be a bit creepy.

Of course if he was being discriminatory and saying that they should not give screen time to lesbians and homosexuals as opposed to heterosexuals then I can see the point (although to an extent they have a right to show whatever they think is appropriate jsut like I wouldnt expect a lesbian tv show to show 90% heterosexuals) - however since the media seems to have gotten the wrong end of the stick so badly here I wouldn't know what he meant.

Still there is a bit of fexing of muscle here. Just think - y'all got this stadium manager to have to go over to westpac and apologize and kiss-ass!

Posted by Genius : 1/12/2006 06:57:00 PM

Good on Tony Milne, my hat off to you sir!

Posted by Miramar Mike : 1/12/2006 08:08:00 PM

"It's good to see that they recognise they were in the wrong. At the same time, in this day and age, they shouldn't have needed the reminder."

It depends on who you mean by "they".... I dont see Westpac to have been in the wrong here.... they simply provide money to an organization in exchange for naming rights.... it was the stadium chairman who was in the wrong, and clearly, once it was drawn to their (Westpac's) attention, they put pressure on the stadium chairman to change.... which, as you said, shouldnt have been neccesary in the first place.

Apart from being able to forsee stupidity in people acting in thier name, and appointing someone else before it happened (perhaps not even possible depending on how much influence a sponsor has on a trust boards appointments?), what more could Westpac have done?

But yes, good effort in contacting the sponsor to get a result...


P.S. I have no affiliation with and actually some dislike of Westpac.

Posted by Anonymous : 1/13/2006 12:16:00 PM