Tom Lambert v David Birchell (with Boxing Australia)

Disciplinary dispute regarding a complaint about alleged breaches of the Boxing Australia Participation Protection Regulations


Tom Lambert v David Birchell (with Boxing Australia)

Matter number:
Date of decision:
Dispute type:
Disciplinary dispute
Dispute resolution method:

The Applicant and the Respondent are both members of the Applicant Sporting Body, Boxing Australia. The Applicant, Mr Lambert, submitted a formal complaint to Boxing Australia New South Wales regarding two alleged incidents which involved the Respondent, Mr Birchell. The matter was referred to the National Sports Tribunal by Boxing Australia under its Regulations for the Determination of Complaints and Disputes and the Investigation or matters by Commission of Inquiry to determine if the incidents amounted to a breach of the Participant Protection Regulations.

Mr Lambert contended that Mr Birchell approached him and spoke to him in an aggressive manner at the annual Golden Gloves tournament in August 2022. Mr Birchell denied that he spoke to Mr Lambert on this date at this event. At a junior development day at the Australian Institute of Sport in October 2022, Mr Lambert and Mr Birchell are again alleged to have had an interaction, with Mr Lambert saying that Mr Birchell approached him and spoke to him in an aggressive manner.  Both parties agreed that this conversation took place, however, Mr Birchell argues he was frustrated when speaking to, but not aggressive towards, Mr Lambert.

The Tribunal found that there was insufficient evidence to confirm that the first incident took place as alleged. In respect of the second incident, the Tribunal determined that Mr Birchell should have approached the matter differently and not in a public forum, but did not find that Mr Birchell had breached any relevant policies. Accordingly, the application was dismissed. The Tribunal noted that all persons are entitled to a workplace that is free from bullying, harassment and intimidation, and encouraged the parties to address their concerns by way of mediation.