“The AOC has strict Child Protection policies in place,” the Australian Olympic Committee stated following the announcement that some of Australia’s most
high-profile sporting clubs and institutions are set to come under the microscope of the Child Abuse Royal Commission. According to the AAP wire service, the inquiry next month will investigate the response of Tennis Australia, Tennis NSW and the NSW Institute of Sport to allegations of child sex abuse by a tennis coach. The commission will also examine the response of Football NSW to allegations of abuse by a soccer coach. Child protection policies and responses to allegations from the Australian Olympic and Paralympic committees, Netball Australia, Little Athletics and Surf Life Saving
Australia will also be investigated, along with those of Cricket Australia, Queensland Cricket and a local Queensland cricket club.
“AOC staff have been collaborating with the Royal Commission and the President of the AOC, John Coates, has been invited to appear at the Royal Commission to outline those policies,” reads the AOC statement. “They include a requirement by the AOC for all officials and associate officials, including coaches, to obtain a satisfactory working with children clearance prior to their appointment to the 2016 Australian Olympic Team in RIO… The AOC is ensuring the implementation of these policies to create a child-safe environment in RIO – relating to the mental and physical welfare of minors.”
The AOC continueds stating that John Coates has led the way in child protection and he will appear before the Royal Commission to outline the AOC’s procedures in April. “It is vital that we properly safeguard our athletes and uphold the behavioral standards required of an Australian Olympic Team member,” the AOC President is quoted as saying.
This story first appeared in the blog, The Sport Intern. The editor is Karl-Heinz Huba of Lorsch, Germany. He can be reached at ISMG@aol.com. The article is reprinted here with permission of Huba.