SportSG to work with authorities to combat sexual misconduct, Latest Others News - The New Paper

SportSG to work with authorities to combat sexual misconduct

National sports agency Sport Singapore (SportSG) will partner the Ministry of Social and Family Development, Singapore Police Force and Ministry of Education to form a SafeSport commission next year, to combat sexual misconduct in sport, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Grace Fu announced yesterday.

She made the announcement while delivering the opening address at the CoachSG Conference 2018, at the Agora Hall at Republic Polytechnic.

"The commission will develop guidelines to help the sports fraternity have a better understanding of best practices, and establish a reporting process for abuse," said Minister Fu.

The setting up of the SafeSport commission follows allegations of sexual misconduct against coaches.

In January, veteran athletics coach Loh Chan Pew appeared in court to face molestation charges involving a teenage athlete, who was 18 when the alleged incident occurred in 2013.

He testified in court in July, and the trial is ongoing. Also, national hurdler Kerstin Ong lodged an official complaint with SportSG, accusing another coach of misconduct. The coach was later given a stern warning by police.

In March, a rope-skipping coach was jailed for 25 years for sexual offences against a female student, who was between 13 and 14 years old at the time.

That same month, a 28-year-old football coach was given 26 years' jail and 24 strokes of the cane for sexually assaulting seven boys aged between eight and 11.

In response, CoachSG, an academy for coaches under SportSG, updated its Values and Principles in Sport course to include discussions of real incidents between coaches and their charges, and made it a must for the over 3,000 coaches in the National Registry of Coaches (NROC) to attend the course in May.

In her speech, Minister Fu stressed that coaches, teachers, parents, officials, and athletes all have a part to play in SafeSport.

The CoachSG Conference, into its second year, sees some 300 athletes, coaches, sport administrators, practitioners and educators come together to share coaching ideas and practices that can impact athletes and their environment, through talks, workshops and seminars.