One of the most important cycles in WADA’s mandate will reach a conclusion later this year when the first Compliance Report is presented to the Foundation Board.
WADA will deliver the eagerly-anticipated report at the Board’s meeting in Montreal in November, having two months earlier given an interim report to its Executive Committee in Lausanne.
The November deadline will also coincide with UNESCO’s report on compliance to its ‘International Convention on Doping in Sport’, the means by which countries officially signify their support for the fight against doping in sport.
Helping signatories reach Code compliance is one of the fundamental principles of WADA’s mandate and the November date has been very much at the forefront of the Agency’s efforts for the last few years.
“Persuading governments and sport to accept and then implement the Code is arguably WADA’s most significant achievement to-date,” said WADA Director General David Howman.
“So it is incumbent on the Agency to now make sure as many signatories as possible become fully compliant. Monitoring is crucial to that process.
“The Code has given global harmony to anti-doping in sport but, as well as accepting the principles of the Code, signatories must have in place rules and programs that allow it to be effective.
“Helping them with the task of implementing those standards is a huge part of the Agency’s focus at the moment.”
As of 2008, WADA was mandated to report on signatories’ compliance every two years, though the schedule for the first report was put back a year in alignment with UNESCO’s compliance timing.
The Foundation Board also recognized that certain signatories needed more time due to amendments made to the Code in 2009.
For an organization to become a signatory it must first agree to the Code’s fundamental principles, before amending its own rules to embed the Code’s regulations.
It must then enforce those amended rules and agree to report on compliance.
WADA ASSISTANCE FOR SIGNATORIES
WADA methods for helping signatories become compliant to the Code are tried and tested, and designed to help organizations of all sizes reach the required standards.
There are two stages to reaching Compliance: setting up anti-doping Rules, and then creating anti-doping Programs.
Signatories must first implement Code fundamentals into their rules, and then create programs that satisfy key criteria for testing, results management, Therapeutic Use Exemptions, and education.
At the first stage, WADA has created Model rules for signatories to adopt, and offers assistance through a series of reviews, and sometimes meetings, depending on the degree of help a signatory requires.
For their Programs, signatories can access guidelines on line, particularly for registered testing pools, out-of-competition testing and testing programs, while the WADA Logic Survey is a key tool to self-evaluate the progress they have made.
Throughout the process, expertise and guidance is also on hand from WADA’s Regional Offices and the Regional Anti-Doping Organizations.
“Assisting signatories with compliance is one of WADA’s core activities and we can be as hands on as is necessary,” explains Rune Andersen, WADA Director of Standards and Harmonization.
“We are fully aware that some signatories require more help than others, depending on their resources and particular situation, and we take this into account when offering support.
“Visiting individual countries is often required and, as an example, we recently achieved considerable success from our trip to Hungary.”
Joint WADA-IOC missions to Russia and Brazil in May and June respectively also resulted in gaining a clearer idea as to the anti-doping challenges these countries face.
“There has been considerable compliance progress made in the last couple of years, but we are under no illusion that there is still much to do,” added Mr. Andersen.
“November is a key date for us and I want to encourage as many signatories as possible to make a huge effort to become fully compliant before that deadline.”