Following multiple media interviews regarding the 2021 Curly Mal Jam, northern beaches surf industry figure Global Surf Industries has stepped in to ensure equal prize money across the male and female divisions.
The company, which is based on the northern beaches, responded to media reporting and yesterday wrote to the event committee.
“It is with great pleasure that we have transferred the sum of $4,850 into the Mal Jam account to reward the Open Women’s champion and place-getters at last weekend’s event,” said GSI CEO Mark Kelly.
“We are committed to the advancement of women’s surfing in Australia and pleased to be able to help out and resolve the issues surrounding the prize money that arose from this year’s Mal Jam.”
The resolution followed intensive consultations between the event committee and Surfing NSW, the sports governing body within the state and the national body, Surfing Australia, which also saw a commitment of equal prize money for all future events.
“We are committed to empowering women through surfing and appreciate the genuine contribution and forward commitment expressed by the Mal Jam committee and of course, we commend GSI for their generosity,” said Surfing NSW Chair John O’Neill.
Phil Nicol, Secretary of the North Curl Curl Longboarders, said after discussions with club president Tim Rielly and Surfing NSW, the club was glad it had been able to right the wrong with GSI’s assistance.
“We hope that by correcting this error we might, at least, have confirmed a positive precedent for other clubs. We have certainly done so for our own,” Mr Nicol said. “This is a positive step for the future. We feel recognising this is beneficial to show that this is meaningful and not tokenistic change.”