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Given media coverage around an incident concerning the actions of a contracted ticketing staff member we would like to provide the following context and clarification. The incident happened at our stadium, under our watch and therefore we apologise to anyone who has been negatively affected. We can assure you the appropriate steps have been taken to avoid a repeat situation.

Please find background context below followed by a statement from AOSMA GM Operations, Darren Chandler.

Background information

The evening in question was the Adelaide v Geelong match on 12 July 2018 at Adelaide Oval which featured a ‘curtain raiser’ between teams from the APY Lands and Maralinga for the annual Don McSweeney Aboriginal Lands Cup (coinciding with NAIDOC week). This was the fifth AFL game of the 2018 season at Adelaide Oval that either had an indigenous theme or curtain raiser. We are enormously proud of the role Adelaide Oval plays in bringing communities together, and the Don McSweeney Aboriginal Lands Cup is a highlight on our calendar.

During the course of the evening, SA Police and Adelaide Oval security teams became concerned with a group of individuals who had either been refused entry or would be refused entry for being in breach of Adelaide Oval’s Conditions of Entry. These individuals were highly intoxicated and behaving in an aggressive way that put Adelaide Oval staff and patrons at risk. They were persistently trying to gain access to the stadium.

SA Police working with security gave a directive to the East Box Office to not sell tickets to the individuals in this group to prevent them from getting to the gates where they would be refused entry. This directive was misinterpreted by the contracted box office staff who, regrettably, did not seek further clarification or follow established protocols that would have immediately clarified the situation (McArthur Recruitment provide staff to operate box offices at Adelaide Oval on behalf of Ticketek).

Once Adelaide Oval Management became aware of this issue the following day, our operations team took immediate steps to investigate with Ticketek/McArthur and to clarify protocols and lines of communication. We reviewed the matter with SA Police and our security teams. We attempted to speak with the McArthur staff member who lodged the complaint but were informed she did not want to meet with us. We were not directly involved with McArthur’s internal investigation.

To clarify – any suggestion that tickets were not sold to any/all indigenous people as a matter of policy is completely incorrect, as is any suggestion that tickets were not sold to any/all indigenous people in the lead up to the game (other than if advised to by SA Police/Security because of behavioral issues).

Statement from AOSMA GM Operations, Darren Chandler

“Our staff work incredibly hard to make sure everyone feels welcome at Adelaide Oval and entry is only ever denied when someone is judged to be in breach of our conditions of entry.

“Therefore, it is extremely disappointing that a supervisor in the ticketing office misinterpreted a message from police and didn’t follow established protocols that would have clarified the situation. We are unequivocal in our stance that everyone is welcome at Adelaide Oval and we condemn discrimination in any form. We apologise to anyone affected and have taken steps to ensure this situation doesn’t arise again.”