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Swimming Australia unveils new nationwide inclusive swimwear policy

Swimming Australia unveils new nationwide inclusive swimwear policy
April 16, 2021

Swimming Australia has this week announced a new nationwide inclusive swimwear policy which will allow swimmers at all competition levels to wear alternative or modified swimwear, ensuring no swimmer is excluded or discriminated against on the basis of competitive swimwear.

The policy has been released following the renewal of national inclusive swimming framework.

Advising that he was proud to be talking about such an important topic, Swimming Australia President, Kieren Perkins stated “choice is an important enabler of inclusion.

“I am excited that this new policy will encourage participation in all levels of swimming by offering greater choice in swimwear that accommodates and supports the individual needs of our competitive swimming members.

Swimming Australia have stated a lack of appropriate competitive swimwear options are a key barrier to participation in swimming for many people in the community, related to a number of factors, including: a swimmer’s cultural or religious observations, impairment, hygiene needs, modesty, body image and cost.

With the policy stating that the sport “seeks to accommodate and support swimmers’ individual needs and encourage participation and involvement in swimming competitions at all level for Australians”, its key points include: any swimmer at all levels can request to wear modified or alternate swimwear, all swimmers are eligible for an Australian record if they wear approved modified or alternative swimwear, swimmers may choose a style that covers legs, arms and/or head and if approved, there is no limit to the number of pieces the swimwear may be made from.

Images: Swimming Australia's inclusive swimwear policy (top) and Swimming Australia President, Kieren Perkins [left], with newly appointed Swimming Australia Chief Executive Alex Baumann (below).

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