Sport Wales steps in to advise on WRU allegations amid calls for CEO Steve Phillips to resign
Sport Wales has stepped in to advise on an investigation into allegations of misogyny and bullying within the Welsh Rugby Union.
It comes after a director of one of Wales' four professional rugby sides called for Steve Phillips to leave his role as Welsh Rugby Union CEO.
The move by Sport Wales has been backed by WRU chairman Ieuan Evans and the Welsh Government's Deputy Sport Minister Dawn Bowden.
A WRU statement announced that Sport Wales will now "advise on the process to appoint a Chair to oversee the investigation, set its scope and parameters and recruit key personnel to its panel".
It added that the meeting was attended by Sport Wales acting chief executive Brian Davies OBE, Chair Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson and Steve Phillips.
In an open letter to WRU Chair Ieuan Evans, Non-Executive Director of the board of Cardiff Rugby Hayley Parsons OBE called for Steve Phillips to resign or be sacked following the allegations.
In response, WRU Chair Ieuan Evans reiterated his plan to appoint an external task force to come into the organisation and review how the Union is run.
The accusations come at a time when the game in Wales is at breaking point, with the nation's four regions in a desperate situation and yet to have a financial agreement in place with the WRU beyond this season.
The full WRU statement read: "Welsh Rugby Union chair Ieuan Evans met with the Deputy Minister for Arts and Sport and Chief Whip, Dawn Bowden today to discuss a new independent Taskforce to be charged with investigating culture and behaviours within the national governing body.
"The meeting was described as ‘constructive’ by all parties, with Sport Wales Acting CEO Brian Davies OBE, Chair Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson and WRU CEO Steve Phillips also in attendance.
"It was concluded that, in order to maintain independence, Sport Wales will now advise on the process to appoint a Chair to oversee the investigation, set its scope and parameters and recruit key personnel to its panel."
WRU Chair Ieuan Evans concluded: "We are keen to progress with this investigation as soon as possible and greatly welcome the contributions of all in attendance today.
"The meeting discussed urgent next steps and concluded that the investigation will focus on culture and behaviours."