Olympic committee asked to cooperate with new study on sexual assault in sport


During the general meeting of Olympic Committee NOC*NSF on Monday, Klaas de Vries emphatically urged members to cooperate in his investigation into sexual harassment and abuse in sports. The former PvdA minister officially launched his investigation on Tuesday and hopes to have a report on his findings ready by December, ANP reports.

"I'm mainly here to ask for help. We want to offer our children a safe sports climate", De Vries said. De Vries is heading an investigative committee that was established after a number of former athletes, first in England and then in the rest of the world, came forward in the media about being sexually abused in their sports clubs. Over the past two weeks four former youth players in football clubs Vitesse and PSV came forward.

De Vries is calling on representatives of federations and clubs to hand over all information that could aid him in this investigation. "It is also important that this is no longer taboo. Clubs are afraid of image damage, but that's something from last century. I think parents would now rather take their children to a club that deals with this topic in an adult way."

Over the past two months De Vries already received a number of reports about abuse and harassment. His focus is primarily on enabling sports clubs to actively step in where necessary. "But you must also have aid ready for athletes who come to report", he said. He is talking with Victim Aid Netherlands about this. 

"The committee wants to understand the nature and extend and to see if the already taken measures are adequate", De Vries said. "Cooperate, give this priority. I hope that this will soon not be the De Vries committee's report, but your report. And that you find value in it."