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Athletes' association says change of culture needed at IOC

Video credit: Reuters - Sports
Published on March 25, 2020 - Duration: 02:50s

Athletes' association says change of culture needed at IOC

Brendan Schwab, the executive director of the World Players' Association, says that the IOC needs to develop a "culture of inclusion" in its decision making.

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Athletes' association says change of culture needed at IOC

SHOWS: NYON, SWITZERLAND (MARCH 24, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) WORLD PLAYERS ASSOCIATION EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, BRENDAN SCHWAB, SAYING: "The correct decision has been made and it will certainly address some of the anxiety levels that we have been hearing about from athletes who have been asked to go through very intense training programmes with the uncertainty of the Games hanging overhead." 2.

WHITE FLASH 3.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) WORLD PLAYERS ASSOCIATION EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, BRENDAN SCHWAB, SAYING: "What we would like to see is a change in the culture of decision-making at the IOC - a shift from the hierarchical approach, a culture of hierarchy, to a culture of inclusion.

The IOC should take comfort from the fact that when it does involve critical stakeholders, when it does involve the athletes, that the best decision will be made." 4.

WHITE FLASH 5.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) WORLD PLAYERS ASSOCIATION EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, BRENDAN SCHWAB, SAYING: "We certainly feel that the IOC was isolating itself with hits business as usual approach.

The World Players Association has affiliates throughout the world and when sports of the level of the NBA, the National Hockey League, Major League Baseball, international rugby, the football leagues in Europe, are closing down because of the pandemic, the IOC was looking almost incredibly hopeful to the extend of being naive." 6.

WHITE FLASH 7.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) WORLD PLAYERS ASSOCIATION EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, BRENDAN SCHWAB, SAYING: "The strong message we have had from athletes is that they are people first, the priority of our global community at the moment is on defeating this pandemic, and then once that has occurred we can turn our attention to returning to elite sport and performing at the highest possible level." LAUSANNE, SWITZERLAND (MARCH 3, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 8.

IOC PRESIDENT THOMAS BACH ARRIVING, AND SAYING "We are all healthy and looking forward to the meeting" 9.

IOC PRESIDENT THOMAS BACH SHAKING HANDS AND SITTING DOWN AND GREETING MEMBERS OF THE IOC EXECUTIVE BOARD 10.

VARIOUS EXTERIORS OF OLYMPIC HOUSE - THE IOC HEADQUARTERS STORY: A change of culture is needed at the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to make decision-making more inclusive, an association representing 85,000 athletes around the world said on Tuesday (March 24), following the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics to 2021.

World Players Association (WPA) executive director Brendan Schwab said that, while he was happy with the decision to postpone the Games, the delay in making it in the face of the growing coronavirus pandemic made the IOC look almost naive.

"What we would like to see is a change in the culture of decision-making at the IOC - a shift from the hierarchical approach, a culture of hierarchy, to a culture of inclusion," Schwab told Reuters.

"The IOC should take comfort from the fact that when it does involve critical stakeholders, when it does involve the athletes, then the best decision will be made." Schwab said that the decision had taken a "long time" and that the IOC only moved its position "in response to some unprecedented pressures throughout the world, initially from athlete groups, certainly civil society." "We certainly feel that the IOC was isolating itself with its business as usual approach," said Schwab.

"The World Players Association has affiliates throughout the world and when sports of the level of the NBA, the National Hockey League, Major League Baseball, international rugby... the football leagues in Europe are closing down because of the pandemic, the IOC was looking almost incredibly hopeful to the extent of being naive." (Production: Tim Hart)

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