The International Olympic Committee (IOC) released the initial components of an Athlete Charter to address and protect the fundamental rights and responsibilities of athletes around the world.
The Athlete Charter has been shaped by the input of almost 200 athlete representatives. Now the IOC is inviting elite-level athletes worldwide to share their voice and contribute to a second-phase survey that will continue to shape the charter. To make their voices heard, athletes are encouraged to sign up on the Athlete365 web page. This is an unparalleled opportunity to shape one of the most important conversations in sport today.
“It’s about empowering athletes to succeed in their sport, making sure their voices are heard, and ensuring they have the best possible opportunities during and after their competitive careers,” said Sarah Walker, Olympic medalist, BMX racer.
The Athlete Charter of Rights and Responsibilities aims to articulate the rights of athletes, and their responsibilities. The goal is a body of fundamental principles that are both universal and flexible enough to adapt to athletes’ needs across the full range of sports and countries. It is an athlete-driven initiative, developed by athletes, for athletes.
The Athlete Charter was discussed with a diverse group of more than 100 athlete representatives from the Olympic Movement at the IOC International Athletes’ Forum in November 2017. A subsequent, first-round survey was completed by nearly 200 athlete representatives to establish themes to be included in the Athlete Charter.
The FIS Athletes Commission vice-chair and newly-elected FIS Council Member Hannah Kearney (USA) was part of the 20 person IOC athlete focus group drafting the Athletes Charter.
Currently organised around five key topics, the Athlete Charter addresses the most relevant issues athletes face today. These include: 1) Integrity and Clean Sport, 2) Governance and Communication, 3) Career and Marketing, 4) Safeguarding, and 5) Sports Competition.
The Athlete Charter marks a step forward in supporting athletes, focusing on topics that go beyond sport, and on athletes’ rights as individuals. It will be an ongoing and ever-evolving document, which will integrate updates even after its release, to ensure continuous relevance and applicability for athletes globally.