A message from Claudia Bokel, IOC Athletes’ Commission Chair
It is with great sadness that we have learnt of the death of Peter Tallberg, IOC member in Finland, and the founding chairman of the IOC Athletes’ Commission in 1981. The IOC Athletes’ Commission expresses its deepest sympathies to Peter Tallberg’s family. Read more about this Finnish sailor’s incredible contribution to the Olympic Movement here.
In December last year, the unanimous approval of the 40 recommendations that make up Olympic Agenda 2020 was a hugely significant moment for the IOC and the entire Olympic Movement.
In the five months since that historic decision, our efforts have been heavily focused on ensuring the swift implementation of those recommendations that most closely affect athletes – and we already have many successes to report.
In April, the first International Forum for Sports Integrity was held in Lausanne to develop strategies and initiatives to help protect clean athletes from issues such as match-fixing and manipulation and corruption, which was one of the key recommendations in Olympic Agenda 2020.
Already, the IOC announced during this forum the establishment of a whistleblowers’ hotline which gives all athletes, coaches and referees – as well as the general public – the opportunity to report anything that may threaten the integrity of sport, such as illegal betting, match-fixing, suspicious approaches or other ethical infringements.
If athletes see anything or are affected by anything, they need to be able to report it without any implications, and this gives them a tool to do that, safe in the knowledge that their anonymity is guaranteed.
While a lot of athletes will say that they have never seen anything, or that they don’t think it happens in their sport, it doesn’t mean that the problem is not there, and this new hotline means we can tackle these issues before they spread any further within our sports.
Comprehensive education and awareness programmes will also be introduced for athletes so they know what they can and can’t do, what they should look out for and what they should try to avoid. I think both of these initiatives are an important step towards protecting clean athletes and it’s good to see that not long after Olympic Agenda 2020 was approved, we are already moving ahead with the implementation of the recommendations.
Another new initiative that has been driven by Olympic Agenda 2020 is the launch of a new education platform for athletes, called “The IOC Athlete Learning Gateway”.
This free, online service is aimed specifically at Olympians and is part of the Olympic Agenda 2020 reforms that aim to strengthen and improve support for athletes.
The launch of the gateway follows the success of the pilot version of the “MOOC” (massive open online courses) and will aim to give athletes, wherever they may be in the world and at whatever stage of their athletic career, access to educational material produced by leading academics and athletes.
The new Athlete Learning Gateway was launched during the Athlete Career Programme Forum in Lima, Peru, which took place from 26 to 28 May, where the agenda was set for the ACP over the next two years.
This year marks the 10-year anniversary of the ACP and, looking back at all that has been achieved during that time, it is certainly a milestone that is worth celebrating.
During the Forum, we evaluated what we have done so far. We also looked to the future to decide what we could do better, which is vitally important as we strive to ensure that the ACP continues to go from strength to strength over the next 10 years and beyond.
Finally, I would also like to remind you that the deadline for candidacies for the IOC Athletes’ Commission elections is fast approaching. It’s important that your voices are heard, so if you want to be part of the Commission this is your chance to stand for election. We are looking for people who want to work on behalf of all athletes, understand the issues that affect them and want to make their voices heard. That is what we strive for at the IOC Athletes’ Commission and we look forward to receiving some great candidatures.
Please remember that you can contact us at any time by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are here to represent you, so please get in touch if you have any issues you want to highlight or if you have any questions to ask. I hope that you enjoy this issue of For The Record.
With my best wishes,