In a powerful and uplifting speech, Jens Sejer Andersen recalled the progress Play the Game has made with its partners – foremost amongst those journalists from the free news media – in not only shining the light on corruption and doping in sport but also in tackling these scourges in the sporting world:
“Just one decade ago, all the challenges I have mentioned were taboo. Sport would not recognise them and would not discuss them. Doping was on the agenda, alright, but mostly as an expression of a weak individual character. Today, these topics are all over the place, at almost every important sports meeting at the national and international level. They are discussed by the Olympic family, by governments, by athletes, by NGO’s, by the media.”
The International Director of Play the Game also outlined the approach for the years ahead, highlighting one project in particular:
“We have initiated this project because we favour athlete participation in decision-making, but also realise it is complex. It is a domain rich in dilemmas and questions that you will also find under scrutiny at this conference, for instance:
- Who has the right to speak for athletes?
- Who has the right to represent athletes?
- How can athletes best be involved in decision-making?
- Who will speak for the millions of athletes in grassroot sport?
- Which responsibilities will come with strengthened rights?
We do not pretend to have the answers, but we will seek broad consultancy – and hopefully get advice from many of you in this room – in order to develop new avenues for athlete power.”
To read the speech in full click here, please.