Paul Cronin

From Bad To Worse !

For most of its history,  the ACBL  allowed players at clubs to send reports or complaints to their Unit Recorder. This was of particular advantage to players in one-club towns (or smaller cities) who had complaints involving the club manager or club owner, as their complaints would obviously not receive a fair hearing, and they could not vote with their feet and play elsewhere. It also had the overall advantage of the Unit Recorder being a centralized repository of misbehaviour by the same player across a number of clubs. In recent times however, possibly because of the litigation paranoia that exists in the US,  this procedure was abandoned, and regulations were enacted that decreed that all club misbehaviour, except serious cases of ethics violations, be handled at the club level. Now, to make things worse, the ACBL has  decided that, effective January 1, 2020, the positions of Unit Recorder and Unit Disciplinary Chair will be abolished. This means that players wanting to report or complain about something that happened at a Sectional will no longer have access to their Unit Recorder, but will have to send same to the District Recorder. Given the size of some Districts, like District 2, this will present some interesting problems in hol ding a disciplinary hearing….suppose a player from St. Catharines goes to a tournament in Manitoba, and files a complaint against a Manitoba player that results in a hearing. Where would the hearing be held? There’s always Skype, or something similar, but not at all like a personal face-to-face hearing. What will the next step be? Taking the Districts out of the picture and having all cases heard by the ACBL Appeals & Charges Committee? With all the real problems that the ACBL faces, why would it choose to make an already bad situation worse? Would love to hear from anyone on the ACBL BOD as to why they voted for this. 


1 Comment

bobbywolffOctober 24th, 2019 at 1:34 am

Hi Paul,

Can only relay the past when the National Recorder official system came into being, Montreal 1985 which started with him having various assistant recorders helping plus an ACBL staff not only keeping records, but doing everything possible to pitch in and keep both bridge ethics on the up and up as well as holding down downright cheating to as low a level as was practical, our tournaments were likely at their pinnacle for the pride of the game itself.

Since then, it has turned the other way and now after reading your post the unthinkable has evidently happened with the abandonment of everything that kept it straight.

When you title your report as Bad to Worse, you are understating the problem. Thank you
for your always important contributions and only wish I could be more active to help keep what you mention from happening.

Your biggest fan,

Bobby Wolff

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