SUPER League clubs have given their unanimous support to plans to introduce a comprehensive player welfare programme across the whole competition.
The programme, which will be rolled out over the next two years, will ensure that all 14 Super League clubs provide the support and education their players require from the moment they enter the professional game until they leave.
It will involve careers advice and support across a wide range of fields, including the areas of finance, lifestyle and education.
The programme’s aim is to produce players who invest their earnings wisely, plan for their financial futures, understand the responsibilities associated with life in the public spotlight and are both financially and emotionally secure once their careers are over.
“All the clubs currently address player welfare issues in different ways, which should continue, and this programme is designed to ensure that best practice is followed across the competition,” said RFL Operations Director Emma Rosewarne.
“As a progressive governing body, and as modern, professional businesses, the RFL and the Super League clubs have a responsibility to support a player welfare programme which reflects the importance of the players, both during their careers and afterwards.
“I’m delighted with the whole-hearted support the Super League clubs have shown for this programme and we look forward to working closely with them over the coming months.”
As part of the programme, each club must appoint a dedicated Player Welfare Manager who will be responsible for all welfare issues at first team level as well as co-ordinating the welfare provision within the club’s junior development system.
The RFL and the clubs will ensure there is a formal line of communication with the players through a recognised union and directly with the players themselves.
Support will be offered in a wide range of areas, including health and wellbeing, lifestyle issues, further and higher education and planning for life after playing Rugby League.