In accordance with the ongoing process to revise the World Anti-Doping Code, the WADA Foundation Board was advised of the progress made with the first Code draft during its 18 May meeting in Montreal, while members also approved the compliance status of a further 38 signatories.
At the Executive Committee meeting the day before, members were advised on developments with submissions and provided guidance and direction to the Code Drafting Team.
As was the case in 2006-2007, WADA’s Executive Committee operates as the review committee and its input allows the Drafting Team to complete a first draft by the June 1 deadline set out in the Code Review.
Included in a series of communications was a letter sent to all WADA signatories on 28 November, 2011, informing them of the start of the Review Process and encouraging them to make recommendations.
Members at both meetings heard that WADA received 91 official submissions during the first Consultation Phase, and that those submissions were comprised of 1366 individual comments.
“The Code Review is a process that we actively encourage our signatories to become engaged in so they can give feedback and guidance to WADA,” said WADA President John Fahey.
“It is not WADA’s Code but that of the world’s anti-doping community, and for it to best reflect their wishes and needs it must be as consultative as possible.
“This review process is designed specifically for that purpose and overall we are very encouraged with the number of recommendations we have received.
“We will soon have a draft on the table which gives us something to work with and develop. Stakeholders will be sent the draft on June 1 and we will continue to seek their guidance and offer our expertise throughout the process.”
The second Consultation Phase commences on June 1 and the drafting team will report again at the WADA Executive Committee and Foundation Board meetings in November, 2012.
1 December 2012 marks the start of the third phase, while a final draft of the Code will be tabled for approval at WADA’s World Conference on Doping in Sport in Johannesburg in November, 2013.
Furthermore, two consultation phases for the International Standards for Testing, Therapeutic Use Exemptions, data protection, and laboratories will run concurrently with the remainder of the Code Review.
Following approval of the Compliance Report in November of last year, WADA has continued to work closely with signatories who had not reached the required standards in terms of anti-doping rules and anti-doping programs.
Since the November Report, particular progress has been made with the National Anti-Doping Organizations (NADOs) in Africa, and a further 10 had their compliance status ratified at the Montreal meeting.
Six NADOs from Asia were also declared compliant, while five European NADOs, two from the Americas and two from Oceania also were approved.
“While the Compliance Report last November was an important milestone for the world anti-doping community, WADA has continued to assist all signatories in terms of reaching compliance,” added Mr. Fahey.
“We appreciate that it is not always easy to implement changes in the current economic climate, so we are delighted with the progress that has been made, especially in regions of the world that may have less resources to work with.
“WADA is here to help and it is a promising sign that this co-operation has resulted in 38 more signatories now fully on board with the Code, while progress has been made with seven others still looking to reach the required standards.
“Achieving full compliance of all signatories remains WADA’s goal and we appreciate the ongoing efforts to enhance anti-doping rules and programs worldwide.”
WADA’s Legal Counsel gave Foundation Board and Executive Committee members an update on the status of data protection in Europe with regards to the submission of athlete information to anti-doping databases.
It was explained that the regulation on data protection proposed by the European Commission could be an impediment to the fight against doping in sport, and one that is a major matter for sport in general to deal with.
European government members were encouraged by the Foundation Board to make appropriate submissions and interventions during the discussion stage of the proposed legislation in order to avoid such complications.
Regional Anti-Doping Organizations (RADOs)
Both meetings were also updated on developments with RADOs following the second RADO Conference in Kuwait in late January.
The objective of the three-day conference was to identify challenges faced by RADOs and to find ways they can work together to make their strategies more effective.
An early outcome of the Conference was the creation of the RADO Ad Hoc Working Group, which held its first meeting in Lausanne six weeks later.
Included in its action plan, the Group highlighted the need for increased RADO funding to be able to operate effective testing programs, for RADOs to develop closer ties with regional authorities and International Federations, and for increased communication of the RADOs needs and aims.