Super Netball: NSW Swifts shooter Samantha Wallace-Joseph’s responds to furore over transgender comments

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Samantha Wallace of the Swifts competes for the ball during the Super Netball Rd.10 match between the Melbourne Vixens and NSW Swifts at John Cain Arena in Melbourne, Saturday, July 10, 2021. (AAP Image/Scott Barbour) NO ARCHIVING, EDITORIAL USE ONLY
Samantha Wallace of the Swifts competes for the ball during the Super Netball Rd.10 match between the Melbourne Vixens and NSW Swifts at John Cain Arena in Melbourne, Saturday, July 10, 2021. (AAP Image/Scott Barbour) NO ARCHIVING, EDITORIAL USE ONLY Credit: SCOTT BARBOUR/AAPIMAGE

NSW Swifts shooter Samantha Wallace-Joseph has apologised for comments on transgender people, saying she feels her post was ‘taken out of context.’

Wallace-Joseph caused a furore when she commented on a social media post declaring March 31 as ‘Transgender Day of Visibility’, writing: “The disrespect is crazy. Don’t play with GOD.”

The words drew considerable backlash, prompting the Swifts to set a meeting with Wallace-Joseph on Tuesday and speak out against the comments.

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“The NSW Swifts are aware of a social media post by Samantha Wallace-Joseph earlier today which has caused understandable hurt to members of the transgender community,” the Super Netball club said in a statement.

“The views expressed in the post are not shared by the Club.

“The Club spoke with Samantha raising its concerns. It is important to note that Samantha listened and will meet with the Club tomorrow.

“As a Club we remain committed to ongoing education of issues of social importance and commentary.

“Many members of our family, both directly within the Club and in the stands, identify as part of the LGBTIQA+ community. The NSW Swifts Club will always be their allies.”

Wallace-Joseph, from Trinidad and Tobago, was part of the Swifts’ 2019 and 2021 championship sides and was crowned the grand final’s Most Valuable Player in the former.

Samantha Wallace-Joseph takes a shot for the NSW Swifts.
NSW Swifts shooter Samantha Wallace-Joseph has been called on to explain her online comments. (James Gourley/AAP PHOTOS) Credit: AAP

In a further statement released by the club on Tuesday night, she apologized for any hurt she caused.

“It was not my intention to upset and disrespect anybody and whilst I feel my post was taken out of context, I didn’t say what I meant clearly,” she stated.

“I did not wish to cause any offence to members of the trans-gender community and it is clear that I have and for that I am sorry.”

NSW Swifts Executive General Manager Kath Tetley said the club remained committed to being a safe an inclusive place for all.

“We are committed to the ongoing education required to ensure there is a common understanding among all cultures and communities that make up the Swifts,” she said.

It is unknown what if any repercussions Wallace-Joseph will face with the sport’s governing bodies saying they would work with the Swifts to determine an appropriate course of action in the wake of the 30-year-old’s comments.

“Netball Australia and the Suncorp Super Netball League are committed to embracing diversity and ensuring the sport is welcoming and safe for everyone who wants to participate, including members of the LGBTIQA+ community,” the statement said.

“The Suncorp Super Netball League is closely working with the NSW Swifts in relation to the sport’s Code of Conduct.”

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