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Ministerial Statement by NSW Minister for Sport and Recreation, Gabrielle Harrison



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M E D I A R E L E A S E · M E D I A R E L E A S E ■ M E D I A R E L E A S E

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m in is t e r ia l s t a t e m e n t b y NSW MINISTER FOR SPORT AND RECREATION, _ GABRIELLE HARRISON (2, 6 - . ^

This Friday I shall be attending the Australian Sport and Recreation Ministers’ Council meeting in Canberra.

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I will put a plan to my Federal, State and Territory colleagues that they . urgently review the involvement of children under 16 in competitive boxing.

At the very least, I believe there should be a ban for children under 14.

There must be a uniform national approach to underage boxing.

The Australian Medical Association also calls for a ban on under age boxing.

The AMA’s Queensland President, Dr Dana WainwrighL said every blow to the head causes a small haemorrhage in the brain.

These can accumulate, affecting the thinking processes and a person’s co­ ordination.

This is the last thing our children’s bodies need. ■

This week we have seen reports of bouts in Queensland between girls as young as 11. .

One bout ended after 45 seconds because one of the.girls became frightened.

Despite what people may think about adult boxing I believe that competitive boxing can only offer children the. possibility of permanent physical damage.

Obviously, boxing is a physically demanding sport and advice from the NSW Institute of Sport says that children should be of sufficient maturity to understand the effects of competition boxing.

I believe as Sports Minister I have an obligation to protect members of our community who sometimes are not in a position to protect themselves.

I urge my colleagues on the opposite side of the House to offer bi-partisan support in what I see as a common sense approach to this issue.

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