Super League: Robert Elstone confident clubs will survive coronavirus pandemic
"Furloughing was a very welcome initiative the clubs put on the table," says Super League's executive chairman Robert Elstone
Last Updated: 25/03/20 2:07pm
Super League executive chairman Robert Elstone is confident all 12 clubs will survive the coronavirus pandemic, thanks to the UK Government's furloughing initiative.
For the first time in British history, the Government has said it will step in and pay people's wages in a bid to protect jobs.
The Government has vowed to pay 80 per cent of a salary up to £2,500 a month.
Elstone says he is confident all 12 Super League clubs will be ready to resume once the season is re-started but in the meantime, leave of absence - or furloughing - is inevitable.
"Clearly, furloughing was a very welcome initiative the clubs put on the table," Elstone said.
"I think every club and Super League is looking very closely at how that allows us to get through this situation.
"We've spent an awful lot of time looking at our staff base and looking at furloughing as an option for a large number of our employees.
"We have to do that professionally and sympathetically and that principle applies across all clubs who I know are speaking to their employees about looking at furloughing. They're doing that sensibly and collaboratively.
"It is an opportunity that will allow clubs and Super League to protect themselves economically over a difficult period ahead.
"We're all sharing best practice on what furloughing might look like and I think there are more announcements expected. We are speaking to professional advisers about what it means."
Rugby league in the UK is set to be suspended beyond the initial return date of April 3, following a meeting between Super League and the RFL.
The 12 Super League clubs and representatives from the sport's governing body met via conference call on Tuesday to discuss the next steps in the wake of the government's decision to place the country on lockdown.