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Why are referees treated like second class citizens by the National Rugby League?

Mark Levy & Mark Riddell

Macquarie Sports Radio Breakfast Host Mark Levy is lending his support to the NRL referees who are threatening industrial action after months of negotiating with the governing body over an enterprise bargaining agreement.

The Professional Rugby League Match Officials (PRLMO) has won the right to ballot its members to seek their approval for industrial action after spending two days before the Fair Work Commission alongside the NRL.

Levy has spoken to sources in the refereeing ranks, revealing the whistleblowers are forced to pay for surgery and scans, before waiting weeks to reimbursed by the NRL.

The referees are given 2 days notice, before jumping on a plane and traveling to another state for a game of Rugby League with no travel allowance.

Macquarie Sports Radio understands the top referees are earning around $160,000 a year and the PRLMO is asking for a $40,000 increase to their remuneration.

Levy questioned “why the players are reaping the rewards from the $2 billion TV deal, yet the match officials are being treated like second-class citizens”.

PRLMO chairman Silvio Del Vecchio called into Macquarie Sports Radio Breakfast to thank Mark Levy for supporting the NRL referees and updated the listeners on the negotiations.

Mr Del Vecchio says “negotiations between the NRL and match officials are still considerably apart in key areas, including pay, that is certainly up there but in addition to that it’s all about (lack of) respect.”

Del Vecchio assured all fans of the game that any industrial action would not have any impact on the finals series, because that would be extraordinarily disrespectful to the game.

To hear Levy Let Fly about the treatment of the NRL referees and the response from PRLMO chairman Silvio Del Vecchio, click PLAY below.

Mark Levy & Mark Riddell