NRL news 2023 | RLPA CEO Clint Newton sends message to Peter V’landys as CBA disagreement continues

Rugby League Players Association chief executive officer Clint Newton has fired back at ARL chairman Peter V’landys, stating “you can’t dictate terms to our members” as the media boycott enters its third week.

The RLPA recently refused to rule out boycotting the Dally M medal event, and V’landys told News Corp the potential act was “selfish”.

In an at times testy interview with Nine’s Today, Newton addressed the claims and wasn’t willing to get into a verbal stoush.

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“We’re not going to get into a habit of trying to maliciously attack people and discredit them, we just want to get back to the table with Peter, with an IR (industrial relations) mediator and get on with it and I think that’ll solve the problem,” he said.

Newton went on to say the NRL was “making up problems” in response to V’landys’ accusation that “the RLPA wants confected conflict, they want power”.

“What the NRL has developed is a bad habit of creating and sometimes making up problems to steal attention away from the truth and the reality is our claims haven’t changed … they still remain,” he said.

“We just want to get back to the table with an industrial relations expert and just get on with it.”

The RLPA CEO also recently attended a meeting with the Australian Council Of Trade Unions (ACTU), with Newton stating it was “an opportunity to step into a space in which there was a lot of like minded people”.

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Slater urges NRL and RLPA to ‘grow up’

Today host Karl Stefanovic replied ”I think we know what you’re up to,” with Newton taking exception and firing back “What’s that Karl?”.

“What do you reckon?,” Stefanovic asked.

“Sharing ideas and getting an understanding of whether our claims are unreasonable,” Newton said.

Frustrations have continued to boil over in relation to the CBA stalemate, with Queensland coach Billy Slater recently stating both parties need to “grow up”.

“The players not talking to the media, this is getting ridiculous now. Can we just grow up and just work this out? I don’t understand,” he said on Nine’s The Billy Slater Podcast.

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“To watch a game of footy and not hear from the players after the game, I don’t understand how we can’t sit down and work something out.”

When reminded of those comments, Newton said he’d “love to” get back to negotiations and repeated his desire around a resolution.

“Peter was the one that walked away from negotiations three weeks ago, it’s great that he’s stepped back to the table, that’s fantastic, but one thing that you can’t do, is you can’t dictate terms to our members,” he said.

“Ultimately they’re going to decide who represents them, which is what they do all the time, and ultimately we do want an industrial relations mediator at the table with us to resolve it.

“That’s what happens in disputes, I don’t see what’s so outrageous about these claims, so we just want to get on with it.”

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