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Discrimination laws apply to sporting club membership and sporting competitions.

The law makes a few exceptions to general discrimination rules when it comes to sports participation where physical characteristics make a difference to sports performance. For example:

  • sporting competitions can be limited by age group, such as an under-15s netball team or a Masters’ rowing competition.
  • sporting competitions can be limited by sex if it’s a sport where strength, stamina or physique makes a difference to the results. For instance, it’s OK to have men’s and women’s running or swimming events.
  • there can be special sporting competitions for people with particular disabilities (like the Paralympics)
  • there can be sporting competitions designed to benefit people of a particular race, for instance the Aboriginal Power Cup.

All sports clubs must treat their members fairly and should not allow a culture of harassment or discrimination.  For more information about fairness in sport, visit Play by the Rules.

Discrimination laws also apply to spectators at a sports event, so, for instance, you cannot be refused admission to watch an event because of your race, disability, etc.