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Sports: Drugs

Volume 493: debated on Friday 12 June 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what legal obligations are imposed on the Government by the 2005 UNESCO International Convention on Doping in Sport. (279123)

[holding answer 11 June 2009]: The UNESCO International Convention against Doping in Sport (the Convention) provides a legally binding framework for Governments to take a range of measures to tackle doping in sport and apply the principles set out in the World Anti-Doping Code (the Code).

In summary this includes, where appropriate—funding and supporting a national testing programme; supporting education and training on anti-doping; adopting, or encouraging sport and anti-doping organisations to adopt, measures to restrict the availability and prevent the misuse of prohibited substances and methods in sport; withholding funding from persons suspended for doping violations, or bodies not in compliance with the Code; encouraging and promoting anti-doping research; encouraging best practice in the marketing of nutritional supplements; and encouraging international cooperation in the fight against doping.

The UK primarily complies with its obligations under the Convention by way of administrative action taken by UK Sport, the UK’s national anti-doping organisation. Full details of the Convention can be found at:

http://portal.unesco.org/en/ev.php-URL_ID=31037&URL_ DO=DO_TOPIC&URL_SECTION=201.html

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what obligations arise in UK law from the Government’s signature of the 2009 World Anti-Doping Code. (279124)

[holding answer 11 June 2009]: The UK Government are not a signatory to the World Anti-Doping Code (the Code). However, it supports the principles set out in the Code through its ratification of the UNESCO International Convention against Doping in Sport (the Convention). This provides a legally binding framework for Governments to take a range of measures to tackle doping in sport and apply the principles set out in the Code.

The UK primarily complies with its obligations under the Convention by way of administrative action taken by UK Sport, the UK’s national anti-doping organisation. UK Sport is responsible for the implementation of the national anti-doping testing programme in accordance with the UK’s anti-doping policy, which is fully compliant with the requirements of the Code. UK Sport ensures National Governing Bodies of sport comply with the Code through a policy and administrative approach.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what the legal basis is for the testing of professional sportsmen and women for drug use in the UK. (279125)

[holding answer 11 June 2009]: UK Sport is designated by Government to deliver the UK’s national anti-doping testing programme in line with its ‘National Anti-Doping Policy’ and the principles and processes set out in the World Anti-Doping Code and accompanying International Standards.

It carries out tests on sportsmen and women on the basis of their consent, either through a contractual relationship they may have with their National Federation or as a member, license holder etc. of their National Federation. In both cases they will consent to abiding by the rules of that sport, which include the anti-doping rules, and to make themselves available for testing.