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    Safe Sport – Non-accidental violence and abuse

    Introduction

    The Paralympic Mission includes ensuring that in sport practiced within the Paralympic Movement the spirit of fair play prevails, violence is banned, the health risk of the athletes in managed and fundamental ethical principles are upheld.

    The IPC considers that every individual is entitled to live and work in an environment that is free from embarrassment, discomfort, intimidation or humiliation arising from acts of non-accidental violence and abuse, including those perpetrated knowingly and deliberately (acts of commission) or negligently (acts of omission), that undermine both the mental and physical health of the individual and the integrity of sport. In particular, the IPC recognizes the right of athlete and other members of the Paralympic Family to enjoy a safe and supportive sport environment.

    The IPC have therefore produced a Policy on Non-Accidental Violence and Abuse in Sport which includes a specific Games-Time Reporting Procedure covering the Paralympic Games.

    Non-accidental harms

    Non-accidental harms are a breach of the IPC Code of Ethics and will be investigated and sanctioned accordingly.

    Non-accidental harms are defined as any unwelcome sexual harassment and/or abuse, financial abuse, bullying and emotional abuse, hazing, neglect, physical abuse and child exploitation. Definitions can be found within the Policy.

    Recommendations for responding to non-accidental harms

    If you are experiencing non-accidental harm, recommendations to responding can include, but is not limited to:

    • Victims should clearly communicate to the harasser that his/her behaviour is unwelcome, unacceptable, and offensive. Be as direct as you can, particularly when the alleged harasser may have reason to believe that the behaviour is welcomed, normal or appropriate.

    • Victims can confidentially inform and seek support from a coach, official, colleague or any other senior person you have confidence in.

    • Victims can take personal action by filing a formal or informal complaint to the appropriate (legal) authority.

    • Witnesses should report non-accidental harms to a third party and the appropriate authorities.

    • Document any behaviour directed towards you which is abusive in nature. Include witnesses, how you dealt with the situation and who you talked to about the situations. Inform your NPC, IOSD, IF or the IPC (medical@paralympic.org) about any accusations.

    Procedures

    • For detailed information regarding reporting procedures, both during a Paralympic Games, and outside of the Games environment, please see Chapter 3.15 of the IPC Handbook.

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