«Transcript of the Safeguarding the Integrity of Sport Forum May 2015 A production of Play by the Rules In cooperation with © Play by the Rules 2015 ...»
Some people just make their own choices by pushing things too far. Some accidents, the doping mistakes that people make—and after all, you think, we teach people that diving in soccer is OK if you can get away with it. We teach the sneaking in cricket—that type of thing is all right, as long as you can get away with it, bend the rules a little bit. We talk about sledging. You see sledging all the time. I saw it with the World Cricket Cup, where Brad Haddin, with that sledging and that acceptance and going down to different levels Play by the Rules of that—I was watching that with my son, and he said, “Is that all right? Can we tell them to get off when they’re out like that?” No, it’s not! No! That’s not what sport is about. But it infiltrates down to those levels.
We see at the NRL—we see the whole thing every weekend, with abusing the refs, and the coaches get in trouble for those sort of things. That thing translates down onto our local fields, as well. And it makes you think—has this relentless drive to win made us forget why we play sport and what sport is about in the first place? And are we making the good and right choices and decisions in sport?
This is true, and whenever I do these talks, it’s, “Look, you’re involved with sport. A lot of it’s a late-level, semi-late—you’re competing. You want to win.” And we need to reinforce that that’s fine, but it’s the manner in which—how you win, and how that’s achieved, which is the important thing, as well. Every day, we make decisions on a stack of things in our lives, and at some point, we will run into dilemmas or value dilemmas—what’s right? What’s good? What’s not, in those things? It’s a normal part of everyday life, with the sport and business you work in. But sometimes, they can lead you into those tricky ethical grey areas, and sport has so many of those.
So, how can you make sure that you’re equipped to get it right and not just avoid getting it wrong? And for me, the first step to engage athletes, coaches, or administrators in the decision-making process on any of these issues—it may be the doping, match-fixing, supplements, cheating—any of those issues—is to understand their attitude on what sport means to them in the first place. Find out why they participate, how they consider values like fairness and honesty and sportsmanship, what importance they give to issues like integrity in sport. Do they think about integrity in sport?—because these are for the strongest anchors on attitudes, and then subsequently behavioural choices after that.
So, we talk about integrity, but what is it? There are a couple of good definitions I’ve seen, of doing the right thing when no one is watching, or when you’re out of actions, reflect your inner beliefs and values. They’re just two, but I’ve seen stacks of different ones. And integrity in sport is usually, these days, associated with sportsmanship, fair play, respect, honesty— playing by the rules is a classic with that. And why does it matter? It matters because, again, the integrity issue is taking the values away from what good sport is and its inherent value, a lack of belief and trust in sport when it’s not an even playing field, and all of the health and safety issues that go with that, as well, when you have integrity issues in your sport.
10 Keeping sport safe, fair and inclusive So, for me, the rules and laws and sanctions and codes are necessary, very necessary, and powerful ways to safeguard the integrity of sport. They set down the fundamental elements of competition and fair play, and the spirit of sport. But you think of those sayings—spirit of sport and sportsmanship. They’re such subjective terms, and they change over time as society changes with that. And that makes that grey area even harder for athletes or coaches or administrators. These are good. They’re the sticks, and we need them. We need to keep people accountable through those.
But for me, they’re only half the equation. For me, we need a different conversation in sport, one that questions how people can live and perform in a way where they’re true to themselves and their sport. I really encourage a shift back in the conversation to thinking about why integrity issues are a problem in the first place, what the price is if we seek to win at all costs, and why the concept of fair sport ought to be protected.
And that gets me into my area of ethics. You can find the answer to that by looking at what ethics or being ethical means, what we value, and what we think is right or wrong. So, what are ethics? Before the eyes glaze over—I’ve done the university stuff with these, and you get to lecture out there, and the eyes start to glaze over as soon as you use the word “ethics,” but it’s not. It’s so important with sport, with what we do. Ethics guard the behaviours and the choices we make. It incorporates all these things, rules and principles and values and purpose and morals. To be ethical, we usually choose what we think is the right or the good choice. And seeing what are best or good choices are usually based on our values, and there are some values for you.
And you wonder why we make different decisions or choices? Because we prioritize all of those different values, one over the other. A basic one with that is honesty over loyalty.
Which one are you going to put first? You have a situation—and I’ll run you through a few dilemmas later on, but that’s how the choices work. We value or order those when making a decision, one of those after the other. I think in there somewhere is competition or winning or those, ambition—all of those, mixed in with the other ones, as well, with the sportsmanship and the honesty and happiness, all of those.
Play by the Rules Common values in sport—the main ones we hear on integrity are honesty, respect, fairness, responsibility, compassion, equality, those type of things. And sport, particularly with the trust and honour, commitment, courage, those sort of things—but as I said, all of those other ones around competition and ambition and succeeding are still in there, as well.
But values are only one pillar of the architecture of ethical choice. Another pillar is principles, the fundamental truths that help us work out what’s right and wrong, and they’re the foundation of our beliefs and behaviours. Some examples of principles—”Do unto others,” “Don’t harm,” “Play by the rules,” “Be yourself,” “The rules apply to all,” “Failure is a part of success”—there are a few of the ones I know. And sitting about that architecture is purpose, or your rational of why you do sport. What’s your objective in sport? What’s the meaning of it for you? Is it to win? Is it to get medals? Is it to get ahead? Ego? Or is it some of those other things—building character, meeting friends, that type of thing?
And mixed in with that as well, with your ethical choices, is morals. Morals are the things taught on our life journeys. It might be affected by ideologies, culture, religion, any of those sort of things. And they govern which actions are right or wrong. Ethics and morals tie in 12 Keeping sport safe, fair and inclusive really close together. A lot of philosophers use them interchangeably. Ethics is more—the way I say it is more individual-level. Morals is more a wider-society view of what is right or wrong. Tell the truth, respect others, don’t cheat, don’t steal—those sort of things—morals come into the equation.
And then, you mix in with your organizations, with your rules and standards and law, and then culture comes into it, as well. And there are all the factors that go into ethical decisionmaking. And what I try and do—and I’ll show you a bit later—is just break that down for you, a framework to get you to stop, if you’re in that tricky grey area, just to stop and slow down and have a think about some of those things, of why you’re involved with sport. What are your purposes? What are your values? What are your principles? And put that into a decision-making.
When we talk of ethical decision-making, we refer to a process of building awareness of ethical content, discovering what your values, principles, purpose—all of those things are.
And they’re quite there.
“ When an organisation, team or athlete really considers what it exists to do, for whom it exists (or its purpose), what it stands for and what it won’t stand for (values, principles, beliefs), what its commitments and promises are, then it is usually easier to navigate with integrity when ” ethical dilemmas come up. And they will.
When an organization, team, or athlete really considers what it exists to do, for whom it exists, what it stands for, what it won’t stand for, or your values, principles, beliefs, and what its commitments and promises are, what you see in your goals and strategic plans, then it’s usually easier to navigate with integrity when ethical dilemmas come up. And believe me, they will come up. A lot of that stuff leads into discussions around culture and leadership, as well. Ethics are very much tied into culture. But that’s a conversation for another day.
When you’re making these decisions and involving all these things, this stuff that gets in the way, which we look at in the framework, are biases or assumptions or stereotypes.
And a lot of those I frame as slippery-slop traps. They’re excuses or justifications when you go to make a decision. Anyone heard of any of these when you’re making a decision or choice? “Nobody’s perfect. I did it, but no one’s perfect.” “My coach made me do it.” The old Lance Armstrong one—”If I don’t do it, I’ll miss out.” “I had no choice.” “Everyone does it.” If you hear yourself starting to get into any of those areas when you’re making a choice or decision, you know you’re going down the slippery ethical slope there.
So, on your chair with the framework—making good, reasoned ethical decisions requires a trained sensitivity around those different things, of values, belief, purpose, morals. And Play by the Rules it requires a practiced method for looking through those things. So, I’ve developed that framework. We’ll run through a couple of dilemmas later on. We’ll have a bit of fun. And then, within that, you have to decide a decision. You have to come up with what you’re going to do, your choice, because that’s what ethics is all about. It’s not a philosophical “I would do this” or “I could do that.” Ethics is about action. You get to the end, and you have to make a choice. It might be a good choice. It might be a bad, bad choice. But you have to stick by it and make that choice.
And the more practice, I think—and I’ve seen it from athletes using this—the better they get at ethical decision-making. And it helps them through, and hopefully reduces some of those integrity issues in sport. I’ll wrap my first part up there, but I’ll come back a bit later, in between each of the discussions, and give you a little ethical dilemma around some of the talks that we’re doing. But now, I’d just like to introduce Simon, and he’ll talk about antidoping for you. Thank you.
14 Keeping sport safe, fair and inclusive Anti-doping and grassroots sport PART 2: ANTI-DOPING IN SPORT Simon Henry (Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority) Thanks very much, Paul. Simon Henry is my name, and I’m the director of intelligence at ASADA. So, I’m going to take the next 20 minutes or so to talk about some of the challenges at the sub-elite level, in terms of doping. And then, the next 20 minutes or so, I’m going to share with my colleague, who will talk about some of the, I guess, ways we can collaborate together to perhaps overcome and make us more resilient to those challenges that I’m going to talk about.
So, I’ll give you a little bit of background, if you indulge me for a moment, as to how I came to be on this stage, talking about these issues to you today. I started with the ASADA back in January, and it’s a new role, the director of intelligence role. And I’m here with ASADA on secondment from the Australian Federal Police. So, I’m filling into the space, but I have some knowledge of sports integrity, because like many of you, back in 2013, I saw the press conference with a bunch of eminent Australians who are in leadership positions in sport and government, talking about threats to sport. And to me, as a police officer, that was something completely foreign to me. I had no idea that sport faced any sort of challenge or threat to its integrity. And it was something that I thought, “Well, I’d ike to be part of the solution.” I’m preaching to the choir here with this sort of stuff, but as an individual who’s participated in and consumed sport, I see its benefits to individuals, and also culture as a nation. So, I wanted to be part of the solution, and started digesting as much material as I could around 16 Keeping sport safe, fair and inclusive sports integrity issues. And thankfully, in January, I was able to translate that into a day-today position. So, the last four months have been a really steep learning curve. So hopefully, in terms of session outcomes, I’d like to convey to you guys some of those challenges that I’ve picked up on in the last couple years, but in particular the last four months, in terms of doping-specific challenges.
Having said that, I don’t want to overstate the problem. I don’t want you guys to go away from here thinking that the sky is falling and that everyone’s doping. Certainly, that isn’t the case. It is only a minority of people. But such is the challenge, and such is the number of people who are looking to dope or are doping at several levels, that it is a problem worth thinking about, so that we can make ourselves more resilient to it, so it doesn’t become a larger problem. And one of the rationalizations people with dope use often is, “Well, everyone else is doing it.” And that’s often not the case, but once that perception is there, the problem can become self-fulfilling.
I’m going to talk about some of the drivers that are, I guess, pushing these changes we’ve seen in doping in the last 20 years or so, and then, following on from that, some of the trends that we can start to see, which, I guess, gives you some hard evidence as to what these drivers—what sort of effect they’re having on our society and sport as a part of that.