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Update on Canada’s New Safe Sport Mechanism

Montréal (Québec) – The Sport Dispute Resolution Centre of Canada (SDRCC), selected by the Government of Canada to develop and deliver the new safe sport mechanism at the national level, is pleased to report on its progress to date.

The SDRCC has now delivered three key commitments: conducting extensive national consultations, creating an Athlete Advocacy Committee, and initiating discussions with provinces and territories.

The SDRCC has conducted 31 focus group sessions with a total of 77 national sport organizations and multisport service organizations. A summary report will be distributed to all focus group participants by early December for review and validation. Productive discussions have also been held with government officials and sport leaders in each of the provinces and territories.

“It’s been very encouraging to see such a strong desire to collaborate amongst sport organizations across the country,” said Marie-Claude Asselin, Chief Executive Officer of the SDRCC. “There’s a shared commitment to get this right so that sport experiences are safe, fun and welcoming for all participants.”

A new, 8-member Athlete Advocacy Committee has been created to provide perspective and advice at every stage of implementation. Committee members include:

  • Lanni Marchant, Committee Chair, and a member of the SDRCC’s Board of Directors;
  • Rosalind Groenewoud, appointed by the Canadian Olympic Committee’s Athletes’ Commission;
  • Stephanie Dixon, appointed by the Canadian Paralympic Committee’s Athletes’ Council; and
  • Erin Willson, appointed by AthletesCAN.

The four appointees selected the remaining committee members through an open application process:

  • Cynthia Appiah, Canadian Bobsleigh team member;
  • Angeline Bellehumeur, lawyer and former university athlete in volleyball;
  • Priscilla Gagné, Canadian para-judo team member; and
  • Jarod Manuel, law student and university athlete in track and field.

With the Athlete Advocacy Committee now in place, the next phase of the SDRCC’s work will include: 1) consultations with experts to update the Universal Code of Conduct to Prevent and Address Maltreatment in Sport and, 2) the hiring by February 2022 of Canada’s first Sport Integrity Commissioner. The new safe sport mechanism is expected to be onboarding the first program signatories by the end of March 2022.

About SDRCC
The SDRCC is a not-for-profit corporation created by federal legislation and funded by the Government of Canada. The mission of the SDRCC is to provide the sport community with a national alternative dispute resolution service and strengthen the culture of fairness in Canadian sport by resolving disputes quickly and efficiently and to provide expertise and assistance regarding alternative dispute resolution.

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For more information, please contact:

Marie-Claude Asselin
Chief Executive Officer
Mobile: (514) 465-7339
mcasselin @ crdsc-sdrcc.ca