Former AthletesCAN President Peregoudova joins Abuse-Free Sport – Canada’s new independent safe sport mechanism

Dasha Peregoudova Headshot / Photo de Dasha Peregoudova

MONTREAL – As it officially launches its first phase of operations today, Canada’s new independent safe sport mechanism becomes Abuse-Free Sport, unveils new websites and welcomes an exceptional group of collaborators.

Under its new name, Abuse-Free Sport acts as the national hub to prevent and address maltreatment in sport.

The renewed Abuse-Free Sport website provides information to all Canadians about resources and tools available to prevent maltreatment in sport, including more details on its safe sport education accreditation program and its safe sport research grant program. It also introduces the
key components of the complaint management process to increase understanding of the services available to concerned individuals. Resources available will expand over the next few months as more prevention, education and awareness initiatives are implemented.

Acting as a central pillar of Abuse-Free Sport, the Office of the Sport Integrity Commissioner launches its first phase of operations today.

The Office is set to administer complaints related to violations of the Universal Code of Conduct to Address and Prevent Maltreatment in Sport (UCCMS) alleged against designated participants of Program Signatories and to initiate sport environment assessments addressing systemic issues related to the UCCMS.

The Office also offers support services, such as legal aid and mental health referrals, which are part of a robust, trauma-informed system where everyone involved will be treated with fairness and compassion.

“We are focused on building a system that will earn the trust of the athletes and the sport community as a whole. The sport system needs a change of course and higher standards, and the OSIC is one of the accelerators.”

Sarah-Eve Pelletier, Canada’s Sport Integrity Commissioner

Pelletier’s Office will also make recommendations on sanctions for violations of the UCCMS to the Director of Sanctions and Outcomes, a function independent of the Office. The newly appointed Director of Sanctions and Outcomes is Dasha Peregoudova, a former taekwondo national team member, now an associate at the law firm Aird and Berlis in Toronto. She previously served as the President of AthletesCAN, as a member of the Pan Am Sports Legal Commission, and as a board member of the Sport Dispute Resolution Centre of Canada. She was also the Ombudsperson for Team Canada at the Lima 2019 Pan American Games and the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

Peregoudova was hired by the newly formed Maltreatment in Sport Sanctions Council, an independent body that oversees the operations of the Director of Sanctions and Outcomes. The Council is accountable to the Canadian sport community to address discipline and sanctions when
maltreatment in sport occurs and to make resourcing recommendations for the Abuse-Free Sport program.