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Racism 'virtually a weekly occurence'

AAP  May 30, 2013 10:13 PM

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Taunt such as those directed at Swan Adam Goodes happen virtually weekly, James Brayshaw says

RACIAL vilification of AFL players by spectators happens virtually weekly across the competition, says North Melbourne president James Brayshaw.

Brayshaw says racial slurs such as the "ape" taunt delivered to Sydney Swans star Adam Goodes by a Collingwood fan at the MCG last Friday night are common.

"As the president of a footy club which has wonderful indigenous people playing for us, it's not a one-off incident, it happens way too often," he told the Nine Network's AFL Footy Show on Thursday night.

"It's virtually a weekly occurrence, I think across the board.

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"And I think Adam Goodes what he was doing last Friday was basically putting his hand up and saying: 'Enough. We shouldn't have to in the two hours we run out on an AFL field have to put up with that being said across the fence.'

"And I totally agree with him.

"I think it's a good stance and we as a code should support it."

Brayshaw said players racially abusing each other had been virtually stamped out, but the same thing now had to be done with crowds.

Brayshaw's co-host Garry Lyon said all types of vilification of players needed to be stopped and admitted their own show had been guilty of celebrating one instance of abuse.

St Kilda forward Stephen Milne has said he is constantly subjected to hurtful taunts from crowd members and was upset that the Footy Show featured one of those spectators in what was meant to be a humorous way in a recent episode.

Lyon apologised on Thursday night on behalf of the show.

"That was a grave mistake on our behalf," he said.

"Because Stephen then on the Sunday Footy Show came on and he was hurt by what happened there and he's the subject of constant abuse.

"So from our point of view on the Footy Show, we apologise for that, that was wrong.

"We can't sit here and say we need to (stand up against vilification) and then go and do things like that."