England and Wales Cricket Board appoints chair of commission for equality

England and West Indies Women take a knee in Derby in support of the Black Lives Matter movement
England and West Indies players took a knee last summer in support of the Black Lives Matter movement

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has appointed Cindy Butts as chair of the Independent Commission for Equity in Cricket.

The body - formed in November - will look to tackle inequalities and discrimination in all forms of cricket.

Butts also sits on the board of trustees of football anti-discrimination body Kick It Out.

"I am committed to ensuring that cricket has a bright future in this country," she said.

The commission, which will act independently from the ECB, will gather and assess the evidence of inequalities and discrimination in the game and identify actions the ECB will need to take to tackle the issues.

In her role, Butts will oversee the appointment of independent commissioners "who will bring further diversity of thought, background and experience to the commission," an ECB statement said.

Butts, who has previously held the role of deputy chair at the Metropolitan Police Authority, added: "While it's important we preserve the best of cricket's traditions, it is also important we identify ways it can evolve and innovate to attract and welcome diverse communities who can make an impact in all areas and at all levels of the game."

In December, former Yorkshire spinner Azeem Rafiq filed a legal claim against the club after making allegations he suffered racist abuse.

Rafiq had previously claimed that "institutional racism" at the county left him close to taking his own life.

In January, a survey by the Professional Cricketers' Association found that 14 black, Asian and minority ethnic professional cricketers said they had experienced or witnessed racism in the sport.

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