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Fifita slur crossed Origin line: Burney

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 30/06/2017 Matt Encarnacion

Australian Rugby League Indigenous Council chair Linda Burney believes more players need to follow Andrew Fifita's lead and call out racism where they see it.

Burney praised Fifita for hitting out at an alleged racist social media post from a Brisbane pub earlier this month that suggested a black doll on a patron's back was Fifita's daughter.

The photo named a NSW fan as best dressed during last week's State of Origin game.

"It's hurtful to see such ignorance and disrespect being shown not only to Andrew as an athlete, but his indigeneity - an insult to all Aboriginal people," Burney told AAP.

The Federal MP said the remark, which has since been deleted and an apology released last week, crossed the Origin line.

"They probably thought it was funny, but it's actually very inappropriate and crossed the line of the rivalry between NSW and Queensland," she said.

"The idea that it was acceptable to take liberty of going into someone's family situation and the fact that it was a black baby - I think that's what's unacceptable."

Burney also insists it would be important for Fifita to follow through on his suggestion he would visit the pub when the Blues travel to Brisbane for the Origin decider on July 12.

"He said he doesn't mind what people say about him, but where it crosses line and impacts his family is where he took issue," Burney said.

"And I think this is very powerful - he wants to actually talk to the publican or whoever's responsible for the pub and actions of the pub when the State of Origin is on next week.

"His response is a very proportionate and appropriate thing to do, and very mature. It's really important players like Andrew call out racism when they see it."

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