Good Governance | Integrity | Athlete Development & Wellbeing | Health & Safety
Download Platform PDF: AAA Policy Platform PDF
The AAA stands for the protection of athletes’ health and safety through safe sporting workplaces, which promote and protect the physical and mental health of athletes and their social wellbeing. Athletes must be treated, supported and compensated when injured.
The AAA supports the definition of health adopted by the International Commission on Occupational Health.
“Occupational health should aim at: the promotion and maintenance of the highest degree of physical, mental and social wellbeing of workers in all occupations; the prevention amongst workers of departures from health caused by their working conditions; the protection of workers in their employment from risks resulting from factors adverse to health; the placing and maintenance of the worker in an occupational environment adapted to his physiological and psychological capabilities; and, to summarize: the adaptation of work to man and of each man to his job.”
This definition was adopted by International Commission on Occupational Health (ICOH). It is based on the definition of occupational health which was first defined by the Joint International Labour Organisation/World Health Organisation Committee on Occupational Health in 1950, then revised in 1995. (Source: Benjamin O. Alli, Fundamental Principles of Occupational Health and Safety, Second Edition, International Labour Organisation, Geneva, 2008, pages 20 and 22.)
The unique risks associated with sport do not justify a departure from these principles. Instead, those unique risks demand these principles be strictly adhered to if sport is to not only be a safe workplace, but to uphold its important social value.
- Better injury prevention.
- Enforceable best practice medical standards for athletes.
- Statutory protection for athletes in the event of workplace injury.
- Athletes’ self-determination of medical matters.
- Comprehensive medical information for athletes.
- Registration and professional standards for all medical and para-medical club/league personnel, including sports scientists.
- Better and early identification of mental illness in athletes.
- Recognition of the effect of mental illness on physical health and conduct.
- Access to confidential and quality mental health care for all athletes.
- Acceptance by public and governing bodies of a medical rather than punitive model for addressing conduct arising from mental illness.
- Payment of an athlete’s medical costs arising from a work-related injury or condition regardless of when it manifests and/or when the treatment is required.
- Allowing athletes a minimum 104 week period within which to recover payment and rehabilitate from an injury, regardless of at what point during a contract the athlete is injured.
- Mandatory career ending injury insurance, giving the athlete time to prepare for post-sport employment, regardless of at what point during a contract the athlete is injured.
- Educate athletes regarding the minimum medical standards.
- Obtain support from medical expert(s)/medical community.
- Advocate standards with governing bodies.
- Advocate standards with Government.
- Advocate competition schedules with governing bodies that promote the wellbeing of the athletes.
- Advocate regulation of all medical and para-medical club/league personnel with government.
- Educate stakeholders to identify mental health issues and to treat according to best practices.
- Obtain support from mental health expert(s)/mental health community to develop access to confidential and appropriate treatment.
- Advocate adoption of mental health programs with governing bodies.
- Advocate for the establishment of effective compensation schemes to protect athletes when injured.
- Adoption of best practice health and safety minimum standards by governing bodies in professional sports, such as the minimum standards provided in Attachment A. These should preferably be enforced through a collective bargaining agreement.
- Adoption by governing bodies of scheduling of competitions that allow sufficient recovery time for athletes and lessen the risk of injury.
- Monitoring and action by Government where required.
- Registration of all medical and para-medical club/league personnel including sports scientists.
- Adoption by governing bodies of mental health protocols that provide for early detection and treatment of athletes’ mental health issues.
- Adoption by governing bodies of a medical rather than punitive model for addressing conduct arising from mental illness.
- Public acceptance of a medical rather than punitive model for addressing conduct arising from mental illness.
- The revocation of all laws which exclude athletes from the protection of Workers’ Compensation Legistlation.
- A National Sportscare Program that will provide minimum cover for all athletes who do not have access to superior cover under a collective bargaining agreement.