The Basketball Federation of Sri Lanka singed the ‘Safe Sport’ policy in sport mooted by the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka under the auspices of the International Olympic Committee at the NOC SL headquarters on October 12.
By signing this groundbreaking agreement, the SLBF is hoping to make the sport safe for the athlete and make the scope wider for participation. Explaining their stance newly elected SLBF President Aelian Gunawardena said “Basketball like any other sport particularly a sport that is played amongst females as much as males require that the players are kept safe when it comes to the coaching staff, management staff and the parents. Essentially it has to be safe place for all participants.
“It also has to be safe among the players as well. You have to be mindful of seniors bullying the juniors and harass them in other ways. It is important that it has to be a safe place for the juniors to be in the sport. I noticed this even in schools the younger players may be qualified to play along with the seniors, but are weary owing to the said reasons. But if there are is a laid down policy which spells the way that a player or anyone connected to the team could be penalised through the federations to the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka it might be a good way of making feel safer and I believe this is the whole purpose of it. Then even there is a predator they would be mindful and back off”.
Gunawardena said that he was elected to the chair two months ago and one of the very first acts of the new body was to appoint a new code conduct taking salient points from institutions like the NOC SL and other sports bodies. He said that when there is a policy laid down on paper there is a mechanism to address particular situations.
The picture shows NOC SL Women’s Committee Chairperson Niloo Jayathilaka handing over the “Safe Sport” policy MOU to SLBF President Aelian Gunawardena. Also seen in the picture are Chandana Liyanage (NOC SL Assistant Secretary and Secretary SLBF) and Suresh Subramaniam (President NOC SL) (Picture by Kandula Yatawara NOC SL)