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Vera Baird Statement Regarding Ched Evans

8th January 2015

“OAFC has a proud tradition of family values and I am glad that this decision has not undermined that.

“Ched Evans has now offered a limited apology, though not for his actions on the night in question and so he remains a risk and a poor role model as an unrepentant convicted rapist. I hope his supporters will stop their three year course of abuse and vindictive ways towards the victim, as Mr Evans has asked. I’m only sorry that he did not take this action in 2012.

“We need to continue ensuring that victims of rape, both male and female, receive the help, support and guidance to report such crimes as we seek to do so here in Northumbria.

“In relation to the abusive and threatening comments to staff of Oldham Athletic whilst the board was making their decision are totally unacceptable and I am pleased that Greater Manchester Police will investigate these and take necessary action.

“The FA has a duty to review its processes so that decisions on employing convicted criminals are not governed by the drive for footballing profit but are dealt with on a basis of clear principle.”