Ministry of Sport

The Rise of Athlete Rights: To Be Discussed At 2019 National Sport Integrity Forum

The fourth edition of the National Sport Integrity forum will be held in Melbourne during the opening night of the National Sports Convention next month.

Discussing the topic The Rise of Athlete Rights: The Fair Play aGENDER, the 2019 panel will include former Socceroo and human rights activist, Craig Foster, Olympic gold medallist and IOC Member, James Tomkins, former athletes Tamsyn Lewis Manou and Mianne Bagger, World Players Association Executive Director Brendan Schwab and Victorian Office for Women in Sport and Recreation head, Dr Bridie O’Donnell.

Presented by the Sport Australia Hall of Fame, Victoria University and Sport Australia, the event will explore a range of issues focussing on athletes’ rights and integrity beyond 2020, as the escalation of the individual athlete’s voice in seeking to establish and advocate their rights becomes a key driver of both public opinion and sport policy.

Panel members will be complemented by front-row topic specialists including:

  • Kim Brennan – Olympic gold medallist; Deputy Chef de Mission for the Australian Olympic Team to compete at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games
  • Matti Clements, Deputy Director, Australian Institute of Sport – Athlete Wellbeing and Engagement
  • Steve Johnson, CEO, Wellbeing Science Institute
  • Dr Sarah Oxford, Sociologist, Victoria University; expert on gender and inclusion in sport
  • Professor Julian Savulescu, Co-Director, Wellcome Centre for Ethics and Humanities University of Oxford
  • David Sharpe, CEO, ASADA
  • Associate Professor Michelle Telfer, Head of Department of Adolescent Medicine at The Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH) Melbourne.

Victoria University Professor of International Sport Business, Hans Westerbeek, said issues of fairness, inclusion and athlete rights are central and growing themes in world sport.

“Athletes like Caster Semenya are making headlines in Australia and around the world as sport grapples with balancing athlete rights and what is fair,” Professor Westerbeek said.

“Restrictions resulting from IOC Rule 40, and equity of broadcast and sponsorship revenue distribution are now being challenged globally and closer to home as athlete and player unions grow in voice and force.

“The question begs, what is fair and this will be discussed in detail at the forum.”

Sport Australia Hall of Fame chair, John Bertrand AO said: “Sport faces many new and challenging frontiers.”

“Considered and compassionate discussion around the issues and the repercussions is important in the context of not only athletes’ rights but also the impact on the broader global community.

“As thought leaders, Victoria University, Sport Australia, and we at the Sport Australia Hall of Fame plan this topic to form the centrepiece of discussions at our National Sport Integrity Forum in July,” Bertrand said.

2019 National Sport Integrity Forum
The Rise of Athlete Rights: The Fair Play aGENDER

Date:               Tuesday 23 July 2019
Time:               5:30pm – 8:00pm
Venue:             Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
Website:          www.vu.edu.au/sportintegrity

Shaun Carney

Shaun Carney