Friday, November 16, 2012

A Review of Domestic Anti-Doping Legislation

A recent study by Barrie Houlihan and Borja Garcia of the University of Loughborough in the UK has surveyed UNESCO countries for the presence of anti-doping legislation governing sport (or PEDS, performance enhancing drugs).

They explain their focus (here in PDF) as follows:
The intention was to obtain responses from those in government directly responsible for ensuring their country’s compliance with its commitments under the terms of the UNESCO Convention Against Doping in Sport.
They only received responses for 55 of 153 UNESCO countries, of which 51 were substantive enough for analysis. That leaves about 100 UNESCO countries unsurveyed by this paper. More than 200 countries participated in the 2012 London Olympics. A summary of their findings appears in the table below.
Only 18 countries have PEDS-specific legislation. An additional 25 have relevant, but not focused, legislation.

The US does not have PEDS-specific legislation, and the paper notes:
The United States, which has made considerable progress in tackling doping in sport in recent years, is a good example. PEDS trafficking falls under the remit of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), but ‘there is not a comprehensive set of PEDS chemicals included within the purview of the CSA; rather, only those PEDS which have additional characteristics of abuse potential or health risk are listed under CSA’. While anabolic steroids, for example, are covered and traffickers can receive a prison term ‘many substances of concern for PEDS are not addressed under CSA scheduling’ and are unlikely to be addressed as ‘the criteria for inclusion of any particular substance under CSA and scheduling purview are distinct from their impact on performance-enhancement, per se’
More generally, the paper concludes:
The research identified two broad approaches to tackling the issue of the production, movement, importation, distribution and supply of performance-enhancing drugs in sport. The first approach was to introduce laws specifically designed to address PEDS trafficking and the second was to utilise and/or amend existing legislation concerned with recreational drugs. Successful sporting countries were more likely to be found among the former group. More importantly countries which had introduced PEDS-specific legislation were more likely to have a NADO which is actively involved in the investigative process concerning PEDS trafficking. In addition, countries which had introduced PEDS-specific legislation appeared to be more likely to pursue cases through to conviction. However, two caveats are required, first, where PEDS-specific legislation is absent identifying PEDS cases from among the range of general drugs cases is not easy and second, much of the PEDS-specific legislation is relatively recent and there is often a time-lag between the introduction of new legislation and its incorporation into the routines of the police, the prosecution services and the courts.
Such reviews are incredibly important for mapping the policy terrain of sports governance, especially as greater integration and harmonization becomes important.

Reference: Barrie Houlihan and Borja García, 2012. The use of legislation in relation to controlling the production, movement, importation, distribution and supply of performance-enhancing drugs in sport (PEDS), Institute of Sport and Leisure Policy School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK. (PDF).


Post a Comment