Boccia Canada becomes a Signatory of Abuse-Free Sport
Ottawa, ON (February 7, 2023) – Boccia Canada is pleased to announce that it has signed an agreement to join Abuse-Free Sport, the new independent program to prevent and address maltreatment in sport.
Boccia Canada and its stakeholders at the national level will have access to the services of the Office of the Sport Integrity Commissioner (OSIC), which serves as the central hub of Abuse-Free Sport and operates independently to receive complaints about alleged violations of the Universal Code of Conduct to Prevent and Address Maltreatment in Sport (UCCMS). The UCCMS is the core document that sets harmonized rules to advance a respectful sport culture that delivers quality, inclusive, accessible, welcoming and safe sport experiences.
Effective immediately, the OSIC will administer any complaints about admissible allegations of abuse, harassment or discrimination against Boccia Canada designated National level participants. This includes staff, board of directors, committee chairs, national team athletes, performance partners, and coaches, national level officials including referees and classifiers, participants at National Sanctioned Events, and a variety of contractors who work with athletes.
Boccia Canada has adopted the UCCMS, which is a requirement before it could become part of the Abuse-Free Sport program and has made required policy changes. In addition, consent forms from individuals designated as UCCMS Participants have been received.
Boccia Canada’s participation in the Abuse-Free Sport program is in addition to the independent Safe Sport mechanism the organization already has in place. That program will remain for any complaints not covered by the UCCMS, or against a non-designated participant. Those complaints can continue to be directed to the Boccia Canada Independent Third Party (ITP), W&W Dispute Resolution Services, by email at email@example.com for national level complaints, or the appropriate Provincial/Territorial Sport Organization for provincial related complaints. A complete overview on how to file a complaint to either Abuse-Free Sport or our ITP is outlined in this section of the Bocca Canada website.
“Boccia Canada is committed to providing a safe and positive sport environment, and fully recognize our responsibility to protect the health and well-being of our participants,” stated Peter Leyser, Executive Director, Boccia Canada. “As part of our commitment to safe sport, we are pleased to sign on to Abuse-Free Sport. We believe that all athletes, coaches, performance partners, officials, staff and volunteers have the right to participate in a safe and inclusive environment that is free from abuse, harassment, and discrimination.”
You can find more information about the Abuse-Free Sport program HERE, on the OSIC website HERE, and on the Boccia Canada website HERE, including our full suite of policies.
About Boccia Canada
Boccia Canada is the boccia delivery arm of the Canadian Cerebral Palsy Sports Association (CCPSA), the National Sport Organization for the Paralympic sport of boccia. Boccia Canada is focused on providing athletes and individuals of all ages and skill with the chance to play a unique Paralympic sport. CCPSA leads, develops and grows boccia from grassroots to producing World Champions, and we collaborate with partners to increase participation of Canadians with physical disabilities in sport.
Boccia is a Paralympic sport of precision and strategy similar to lawn bowling or curling, played by athletes with Cerebral Palsy, Muscular Dystrophy, and related disabilities. It is one of only two Paralympic sports that do not have an Olympic counterpart. Athletes compete in one of six sport classes based on their level and type of disability: BC1, BC2, BC3, BC4, BC5, and Open. For more information on boccia, visit www.bocciacanada.ca.