From 3-5 June, the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA’s) Athlete Committee convened its first ever Global Athlete Forum in Calgary, Alberta, Canada to discuss key developments in anti-doping. The Forum brought together 104 athlete leaders from 54 countries and five continents.
Under the theme ‘The sport we want’, the Forum saw athlete leaders and leading anti-doping experts discussing the current anti-doping system and stressing the importance of the athlete’s voice being further engaged in the decision making process.
Protecting the rights of clean athletes is the WADA Athlete Committee’s highest priority. To that end, the Forum enabled further development of the Anti-Doping Charter of Athlete Rights with the hope of including key principles within the 2021 World Anti-Doping Code.
WADA Athlete Committee Chair, Beckie Scott said, “I am thrilled by the success of this first ever Global Athlete Forum; in particular, as it relates to the level of dialogue that led to a series of key outcomes. Based on the feedback that I have received, Forum participants feel better equipped with knowledge and tools and are walking away inspired and empowered to do what they can to strengthen clean sport. Meaningful change to protect clean sport can only be achieved with athletes standing together for a strengthened anti-doping system.
We would particularly like to acknowledge the Canadian Olympic Committee and the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport for all their support and hard work which were instrumental to the creation and success of this Forum.”
WADA Deputy Director General, Rob Koehler said: “We are pleased to support athletes by working directly with them to protect clean sport. This Forum, the first of its kind, brought athlete leaders together from around the globe and from a multitude of sports with the sole aim of further strengthening the anti-doping movement.”
President of the Canadian Olympic Committee, Tricia Smith, said: “This was a great discussion with athletes at the first WADA Athlete Forum in Calgary. It is our shared responsibility to protect and promote clean sport to level the playing field not just for Team Canada but across the board.”