Discrimination law applies to anyone who is currently a member or is seeking membership to a club or association.

You have the right to be treated the same as any other member irrespective of your:

  • race
  • age
  • caring responsibilities
  • disability
  • intersex status
  • marital or domestic partnership status
  • pregnancy
  • sex
  • sexual orientation
  • gender identity
  • spouse or partner’s identity.

It is also against the law to sexually harass or victimise a member of a club or association.

Club exemptions

There are some situations where it is acceptable for a club or association to treat someone differently.

Associations can be formed specifically for people of a particular sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital or domestic partnership status, or for people with particular caring responsibilities.

In this case, a club may seek an exemption to equal opportunity law.

What you can do

If you think you have been discriminated against, you may be eligible to lodge a complaint under the Equal Opportunity Act 1984 (SA).

Sometimes taking direct action can also solve the problem. Here are some things you can do:

  • Ask club and association managers for reasons as to why you have been treated differently.
  • Depending on the situation, you can check whether the club or association has a constitution and whether there are member protection officers (in the case of sporting clubs) or other relevant contact people for you to talk to.

If this does not resolve the matter, you can contact us with an enquiry or lodge a complaint.

Resources for clubs and associations

The Play by the Rules website provides information on how to prevent and respond to inappropriate behaviour including:

  • discrimination
  • harassment
  • favouritism
  • bias
  • various forms of abuse.