USOC won’t create central list of banned coaches
The U.S. Olympic Committee will ”encourage” but not require
sports’ national governing bodies to adopt standardized policies to
A report released Tuesday by a 10-person task force does not
recommend setting up a centralized database of banned coaches to
keep offenders from jumping from sport to sport. Four-time Olympic
cross country skier Nina Kemppel, who led the task force, said
members discussed the possibility at length but decided smaller
organizations don’t have sufficient resources to make such a
”In the future I absolutely would hope this could become a
reality,” she said on a conference call. ”I think the
practicality of doing this right now across all NGBs would be very
The task force, which included a psychiatrist, lawyers and
representatives from governing bodies, presented its report to the
USOC board over the weekend. It recommends that the USOC develop a
set of training materials and standardized procedures.
CEO Scott Blackmun said he didn’t expect resistance from the
more than 30 Olympic sports, but the USOC hadn’t decided how to
react if any governing bodies fail to adopt the standards.
As with the centralized database, the cost of background checks
and other preventive measures is a major hurdle for smaller groups.
Asked if the USOC would provide funds to governing bodies, Blackmun
said the board needed time to study the budget implications of the
Kemppel said the USOC could negotiate discounts with companies
that provide background checks to drive down the cost for governing
bodies. She also noted that there are other effective screening
methods in addition to background checks, such as contacting past
employers and references.
But those, like background checks, require resources that
smaller organizations may lack.
The issue of abuse in sports has been in the spotlight in recent
months with a series of allegations involving USA Swimming,
although the USOC did not want its announcement of the task force
in May portrayed as a direct reaction to those problems.
”The working group unanimously came to the conclusion that
sexual and physical misconduct is a real issue we need to address
both within our society and within sports,” Kemppel said, ”and
thus really recommended that the USOC take a leadership role in
helping to promote the overall awareness as well as the education