UK Sport has announced that Sport Integrity, a new independent disclosure and complaints service pilot, is being launched in May to support athletes, coaches and all support personnel within the Olympic and Paralympic high-performance community across the UK.
The pilot will assist funded National Governing Bodies (NGBs), operating Olympic and Paralympic high-performance programmes, to uphold the highest standards of conduct in their sports.
Sport Integrity will provide an independent and confidential reporting line and an independent investigation process to deal with relevant allegations of bullying, harassment, discrimination, or abuse, and to allow sports to take the appropriate disciplinary action as necessary. These services will be made available free of charge to funded NGBs.
Sport Integrity will be delivered by Sport Resolutions, an independent sports-specific dispute resolution service, supported by a confidential reporting line hosted by the charity Crimestoppers. Sport Integrity will involve:
· A ‘safe-space’ for athletes and members of the high-performance community to raise a concern
· A confidential and independent ‘preliminary assessment’ to establish all the relevant details of the complaint
· A confidential and independent ‘full investigation’ to establish all the relevant facts relating to a complaint, in order to make recommendations for a disciplinary panel, if appropriate
· Access to trained mediators as an important first step in the resolution of disputes
Sport Integrity also forms part of the high-performance community’s response to the ‘TRARIIS Review’ into racism and racial inequality in sport, following its recommendation that an independent and impartial investigatory body be established.
Sally Munday, CEO at UK Sport, said: “It is the responsibility of UK Sport to support and promote the highest standards of ethics and integrity from the Olympic and Paralympic high-performance community. It is fundamental to our strategic mission.
“We know that the vast majority of those operating within the Olympic and Paralympic high-performance community already uphold these high standards. However, we also know more needs to be done to call out unacceptable behaviour, and for people to be completely comfortable in doing so.
“We believe that independent resolution can be a highly successful way of resolving disputes efficiently and effectively. Sport Integrity will operate completely independently of UK Sport and we are confident that it will enhance reliability and trust in the Olympic and Paralympic high-performance community.”
Georgina Usher, CEO at British Fencing, said: “This is an important next step in strengthening our sporting system, underpinning the responsibility of all in performance sport to deliver training and competition environments which uphold and promote the highest standards of ethics and integrity for all participants.”
Read the full press release on the UK Sport website here.
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