Athlete Engagement

Ben Sandford

Athlete engagement starts with listening.

Athletes have always played a central role at WADA and now, their influence on anti-doping policy and governance is growing significantly. 

Driving this momentum is the ‘Be Athlete Centered,’ priority of the Agency’s Strategic Plan, which involves: 

  • engaging and empowering athletes to contribute to the development of anti-doping policies;  

  • building an easier anti-doping journey for athletes; and 

  • maximizing program impact so athletes can build healthy and sustainable careers in sport. 

Ultimately, we want to ensure we are listening to the views of athletes worldwide and addressing the matters that are of most interest to them.  

Athlete Engagement in Action

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    Athlete Council

    The Athlete Council represents, supports, and promotes athletes’ voices on anti-doping matters; and is the avenue for athletes to occupy important seats within WADA’s governing bodies, namely, the Executive Committee, the Foundation Board, and various Standing Committees.

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    Athletes' Anti-Doping Ombuds Program

    The Ombuds provides athletes with cost-free, neutral, impartial, fair advice and assistance in relation to the World Anti-Doping Program and the entities that play a role within it. 

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    Initial Human Rights Impact Assessment (IHRIA)

    The IHRIA is evaluating the intersection between the World Anti-Doping Program and the human rights of athletes with the goal of ensuring that WADA respects and protects the human rights of athletes as it leads a global collaborative mission for doping-free sport. 

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    Athletes' Anti-Doping Rights Act

    The Athletes’ Anti-Doping Rights Act was created by the Athlete Committee in consultation with thousands of athletes and stakeholders worldwide and aims to ensure that athlete rights within anti-doping are clearly set out, accessible, and universally applicable. 

Other Athlete Engagement Initiatives: 

  • engagement-based presence at Major Events through our Athlete Engagement (Outreach) Program;  

  • increasing use of digital platforms to interact with athletes;   

  • inclusion of athlete representatives on WADA’s Independent Observer teams; and 

  • athlete surveys to gain crucial feedback. 

Find out more

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