The International Canoe Federation Congress has agreed unanimously to adopt and endorse the declaration of athlete rights and responsibilities, ensuring the paddling community has a stronger voice in its future.

ICF Athletes Committee Chair Bridgitte Hartley urged Congress to support the declaration to make sure issues that are important to athletes, continue to be heard by sport leaders.

The declaration was developed by athletes and for athletes, to tackle issues like integrity and clean sport, governance and communication, careers, safeguarding and competition.

It is designed to not only protect and promote athletes’ rights and provide opportunities, but also sets out responsibilities which should be embraced by competitors, including upholding Olympic values, respecting the integrity and ethics of sports, and respecting the rights and well-being of everyone within the sporting environment.

Hartley told Congress one of the goals of the ICF Athlete Committee is to create an atmosphere where athletes can raise their voice when required.

“We would like to attract more athletes to represent their sport under the ICF umbrella, and to create a balance between current and retired athletes,” Hartley said.

Current ICF Athlete Committee members are Hartley (RSA – canoe sprint), Tokyo Olympic gold medalists Sandor Totka (HUN – sprint) and Jiri Prskavec (CZE – slalom), Elidh Gibson (GBR – slalom), Amanda Jennings (AUS – para), Patrick O’Leary (IRL – para), and American canoe freestyle duo Dane Jackson and Anna Bruno.

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