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Drug Free Sport NZ holds successful first anti-doping conference
The welfare of athletes and national sports organisations (NSOs) in anti-doping was the theme of Drug Free Sport New Zealand’s (DFSNZ) first annual anti-doping conference, held in Auckland last week.
Commenting on the conference, DFSNZ Chief Executive Nick Paterson stated “we were delighted with the level of engagement at our first conference, and the quality of the discussions. We want to work hand in glove with the NSOs and through a conference like this we understand each other better.
“It was also an opportunity to challenge us on how we do our work, so that we can keep improving. It was incredibly valuable to hear directly from athletes - as it's all about how we can improve our work and support them to compete clean.
One of the highlights was an athlete panel with representation from hockey, Olympic sailing and weightlifting, as the athletes shared their experiences of anti-doping. The athlete panel was moderated by the newly-elected Chair of the WADA Athlete Commission, Ben Sandford.
International speakers included Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority Chief Executive, David Sharpe, who spoke on crisis management and resilience, and Australian former Olympic rower Kim Brennan who presented on performance ethics.
United States Anti-Doping Authority (USADA) Education Manager Tammy Hanson also spoke, sharing USADA's experience in helping athletes to understand the risks of supplements.
Also addressing the inaugural conference, New Zealand Minister for Sport and Recreation Grant Robertson spoke of the important contribution of sport, play and active recreation to our national well-being, and how sport helps to role model the values of hard work, teamwork and fairness.
Touching on recent international doping scandals and described his role in advocating for clean sport, Minister Robertson explained the importance of "being able to look elite athletes in the eye, and say that they are competing on a level playing field".
He also referred to ongoing conversations with WADA around flexibility and discretion, noting its importance to domestic sport.
DFSNZ acknowledged EY NZ, especially Chairman Braden Dickson and Director Anthony Ruakere, for generously hosting the conference.
Image shows a panel discussion at last week's DFSNZ first anti-doping conference.
24th September 2018 - Board appointments to Eden Park Trust and Drug Free Sport New Zealand
22nd June 2018 - New Zealand high performance sport model ‘not fit for purpose’
9th December 2017 - Drug Free Sport New Zealand starts proceedings against multiple athletes
30th July 2017 - New Zealand to drug test high school rugby teams
6th July 2017 - Drug Free Sport New Zealand announces new Chief Executive
6th May 2017 - NRL rocked by latest drug scandals
14th December 2016 - New Zealand rugby’s new player deal to see testing for recreational drug use
15th April 2016 - Drug Free Sport NZ wins international awards for new learning programme
14th March 2016 - Drug Free Sport launches anti-doping e-learning programme
23rd June 2015 - Research shows sport doping actually decreases performance
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