Sport NZ to unveil major upgrade to integrity measures
Sport NZ will shortly launch major new initiatives to help sport and active recreation bodies at all levels of the sector strengthen the measures they have in place around integrity issues such as child safeguarding, member protection, organisational culture, anti-corruption and competition manipulation.
The new initiatives are the result of Sport NZ’s 2019 Sport Integrity Review Report, which involved significant consultation with the public and organisations at all levels of the sector.
“Everyone involved in sport and active recreation at any level should feel confident the activities in which they participate in are safe, fair, free from harassment, discrimination, abuse and other harmful behaviours. This is particularly important for our young people,” says Sport NZ CEO Peter Miskimmin.
“This is a complex space and one that requires a broad range of initiatives. We need to ensure that we’re encouraging and supporting positive conduct by athletes, participants, administrators, officials, supporters and other stakeholders by providing the right advice and having policies and resources to enable this.”
The first wave of new initiatives will include:
- A new web portal (to launch in October) that will serve as the authoritative resource for integrity advice, education and resources for everyone involved in the sport and recreation sector, including specific resources aimed at children and young people designed to ensure their voice is heard. The portal will also include a community-based guide to sport integrity, child safeguarding and member protection policies, procedures and a legislation library, and an education-based resources section on themes within the integrity framework.
- A new child safeguarding education and training programme pilot to commence in the next two months. This will involve a number of national and regional sport and recreation organisations, clubs, coaches, officials, parents and caregivers, who will have an opportunity to use and test new guidance, policies and processes to help ensure all children are participating in sport and recreation in a safe and supportive environment. This pilot will provide learnings to inform a full system wide roll out early in 2021.
- The development of an independent complaints management and mediation service for all levels of the sport and recreation sector, from grassroots to elite. Sport NZ is planning to commence procurement with a view to launching this service early next year.
“We believe these initiatives will give New Zealand a set of safeguarding measures that match global best practice and will help individuals and organisations across the sector maintain strong levels of integrity in all aspects of sport and active recreation,” says Peter Miskimmin.
“Our role is to provide guidelines and resources to ensure all organisations within our sector can implement policies, procedures and education specific to their operating and training environments, and we’re confident these new initiatives will enable improvements to be made.”
Importantly, a number of further initiatives will also flow out of the Sport Integrity Review Report, with Sport NZ continuing to work with two reference groups with members representing the diversity of the sector. The role of these reference groups is to sense check and test Sport NZ’s initiatives prior to wider release into the recreation and sport sector, ensuring Sport NZ has their support and that the initiatives have the desired level of positive impact on participation and performance at all levels of the sector.