With our Erasmus+ PROtect Integrity Plus project concluding by the end of the year, a final event has taken place in Athens, Greece on 8th of October to share the results and outputs of the project. The conference was attended by player associations and some of the key stakeholders in the fight against match-fixing which was a great opportunity to discuss the progress and further cooperation needed.
PROtect Integrity is a campaign started back in 2010 in cooperation with betting operators, in order to educate players about the integrity and risks of match fixing. Over the years a number of different projects have taken place under the banner, each project building up on its predecessor. PROtect Integrity Plus specifically aims to implement the Red Button reporting app, initially developed by Finish Football Players Association JPY and FIFPro, in 7 different countries and 5 sports, through the work of 8 player associations cooperating with national stakeholders.
In order to see how the match-fixing can affect the careers and lives of athletes, the participants have he from Samir Arab, Maltese football player banned for 2 years for not reporting an approach and Roy Vermeer from FIFPro who was representing Samir at the appeal case in CAS. The story highlights the need for more education, prevention and focus on governance of sport organizations as the sanction of Samir, considering all elements of the case, was widely regarded as unfair and disproportionate.
Subsequently, the results of the project so far were presented, including the Red Button app, research led by prof. David Forrest from the University of Liverpool and the grassroots sport video promoted by player associations during the European Week of Sport in order to broaden the reach of the campaign and raise awareness about the match-fixing. Player associations representatives from AJFSF (Spanish futsal), Rugby Players Ireland and PASAP (Greek volleyball) discussed their experiences and views following the implementation of the project. The case study of a fruitful cooperation between the National Platfrom and the player movement in France was also presented.
The conference concluded with a discussion panel with Matt Fowler (IBIA), Sergio D’Orsi (Europol), George Mavrotas (Greek Government), Mikhael de Thyse (Council of Europe) and Paulina Tomczyk (EU Athletes). The speakers discussed the cooperation between stakeholders in the new environment after the entry into force of the Macolin Convention.
For Paulina Tomczyk, the General Secretary of EU Athletes: ‘I find it really positive and promising for the future that some the main stakeholders in the fight against match-fixing joined the discussion and recognized the essential role that the athletes have to play in this process. We are looking forward to continuing the constructive cooperation with the key actors to protect the integrity of sport’.
EU Athletes took part in the KCOOS+ 2018-2020, 2nd
Advisory meeting of Contributors and Associate Partners hosted by the Council
of Europe – Brussels Office on Friday, March 8th.
The Keep Crime Out Of Sport- “against manipulations of sports competitions” is a technical assistance project coordinated by the Council of Europe. KCOOS+ builds upon the previous EU-COE joint project KCOOS. Project KCOOS+ explores innovative approaches to combating the manipulation of sports competitions and accompany countries in the development of National Platforms, legislation and co-operation and coordination measures. It is worldwide project, therefore expanding the scope of expertise exchange and technical assistance, which will see the project run until December 2020.
The goal of the 2nd Advisory meeting
of Contributors and Associate Partners was to disseminate the overview of 2018
activities, assess relevant associate partners projects that can work in
coordination with KCOOS+ and the council of Europe and discuss the next steps
to the project for 2019.
EU Athletes, along with other relevant associate partner projects, presented its’ ongoing PROtect Integrity Plus Erasmus+ project to see where synergies and the possibilities of coordination with the KCOOS+ project could be found. EU Athletes who represents the perspective of professional and elite level sportspeople in Europe, believes that athletes are a part of the solution and their involvement is essential to combating the manipulation of sports competitions. Additionally, in possible coordination with KCOOS+, the PROtect Integrity project can foster national cooperation in a complementary way, coordinate actions and exchange relevant information regarding activities and developments in particular countries.
The next stages of the project will continue with expanding the scope of expertise exchange and technical assistance to various countries.
Held at the NHLPA offices’ in Toronto, this meeting gathered the most important union representatives of the planet.
First meeting of the year for #UWA executive committee. Held at the NHLPA office in Toronto, Athletes representatives from around the world, held a 3 days meeting to discuss important issues for athletes such as CAS, the next Rio Olympics or Anti-doping.
For Jean-François REYMOND, General Secretary of EUAthletes, this meeting was a unique opportunity to exchange views and discuss the strategy of the group moving forward “Uni World Athletes is a really important vehicle for our members, not only because of the long standing relationship we have with UNI GLOBAL but because unionized athletes need a global voice and this voice is #UWA. Issues are now genuinely global for our members and they need a coordinated response. This meeting allowed us the finalize our strategy. Our road map is really clear and it’s time for actions”
The next meeting of #UWA will take place in July in Amsterdam and an other one is schedule already for November 2016 in Europe.
Natalia Orive is the first women ever to seat on EU Athletes’ executive board.
During the last EU Athletes General Assembly two new members: Natalia Orive from Spanish Female Indoor Football Players Association (AJFSF) and Vasilis Minoudis from Hellenic Professional Volleyball Players Association (HPVPA) have been elected to join EUA Board.
Brendon Batson from Professional Players Federation (PPF) has been re-elected for another three years term. Special recognition must be given to Natalia, who is the first woman ever to sit on EU Athletes’ Executive Board.
In the frame of our Erasmus+ project, 2016 PROtect Integrity conference co-organized in partnership with Interpol has taken place in Lyon, France between 13-15 of April.
During two busy days, the representatives of player unions have participated in Train the Trainer seminar led by Daniela Giuffre from Interpol Integrity in Sport Unit. The program included sessions on integrity in sport, session planning or practical case studies, which have led to interesting exchanges between trade union members and Interpol, working together for the first time. With newly acquired Interpol’s certificates, the participants will soon start delivering face to face match-fixing education via team visits.
The conference was enriched with the interventions from George Paterson related to the European Commission’s role in the fight against match-fixing and Yvonne Nolan, on the Rugby World Cup 2016 Integrity Programme. Sessions on social media and communications and the practical aspects of Erasmus+ project implementation completed the 3 days seminar.
The last day of the event coincided with the #EUSportIntegrityDay held on the 15th of April every year and once again was an opportunity to express our commitment to fight against match fixing.
EU Athletes members: AJFS and AJFSF have undertaken a great initiative promoting #PROtectIntegity around the friendly match between the national futsal teams of Spain and Poland.
On the 25th of January 2016 in Madrid, Spain the AJFS(Spanish Indoor Football Players Association)and the Real Federacion Espanola de Futbol organized an international friendly match between the national teams of futsal of Spain and Poland. For the Spanish team, who won 9:2 (5:2), this game was the last test before the UEFA Euro Futsal 2016 that is currently taking place in Serbia.
The main game was preceded by a game between former futsal players from AJFS and professional female futsal players from AJFSF(Spanish Female Indoor Football Players Association). Both players associations are EU Athletes’ members, actively carrying out the#PROtectIntegrity campaign and have seized the opportunity for raising awareness around the problem of match-fixing.