Date of this Version

12-2017

Document Type

Journal Article

Abstract

Sport, like all industries, is subject to domestic discrimination legislation, which in turn is derived from international treaties. Many sports have also developed internal policies, regulations and/or guidelines to help with the governance of discrimination issues. The Australian Football League (AFL) has had to deal with a number of recent racist situations involving spectators. It is suggested that the AFL should consider implementing an anti-racism policy aimed at spectators like the one developed by the International Cricket Council (ICC). Netball’s rules banning pregnant women from competing were held to be discriminatory and illustrate that guidelines providing recommendations can be a better solution for sports than mandatory rules or regulations. The case of Dutee Chand has meanwhile raised the question of whether women with naturally high levels of testosterone should be allowed to compete in women’s events. The decision of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) that regulations banning her from competing were discriminatory again highlights that guidelines, rather than regulations, can be a better solution for sports. In 2008 the issue of potential disability discrimination was raised when double amputee sprinter, Oscar Pistorius, sought to compete, with the aid of artificial limbs, at the able bodied Olympic Games. While CAS determined it had not been proven that Pistorius had a net advantage, it is suggested that test should have been whether he ran differently to able bodied athletes.

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This document has been peer reviewed.