WomenCAN International created a health and science advisory board seeking to strengthen anti-harassment and anti-abuse policies within Sport, particularly Olympic Canoeing.
Carole A. Oglesby PhD
Vice President and former President , WomenSport International; Professor Emeritus, Temple University; Co-Chair, International Working Group on Women and Sport.
Kathryn E Ackerman, MD MPH
Co-Director - Female Athlete Program; Division of Sports Medicine, Boston Children's Hospital; Associate Director - Sports Endocrine Research Lab, Neuroendocrine Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital; Harvard Medical School; Team Physician - USA Rowing
Anne B. Loucks, Ph.D
Reproductive endocrinologist and exercise physiologist, Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, Ohio University
S. Victoria Jaque, PhD
Academic Director, Program in Assistive Technology Studies and Human Services; Associate Professor, Department of Kinesiology; College of Health and Human Development; California State University, Northridge
Christian R. Macedonia, MD
Associate Professor of Gynecology and Obstetrics, The John Hopkins University School of Medicine; Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialist, Lancaster General Health, Lancaster, PA
Kristie Nichols MD
Board Certified Family Medicine, Main Line Healthcare
Mary Jane De Souza, PhD
FACSM, Professor, Department of Kinesiology and Physiology; Director, Women's Health and Exercise Lab; College of Health and Human Development, The Pennsylvania State University
Kevin R. Maselka
CSCS, HPC; Owner, Elite Physique.
John M. Thompson, MD
Family Practice, Emergency Medicine, and Physical Medicine
Jean P. Buckley, RN
JD, PA-C; Expert - Slalom Olympic Canoeing; Mother to former USA Junior National Champion and international medalist.
Board Member, Senobe Canoe Club, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada; Expert - Sprint Olympic canoeing; Information technology professional; Retired sprint canoeist; Mother to two former national level (Canada) sprint canoeists.
Over many decades a myth has been perpetuated by officials at all levels of the sport of Olympic Canoeing: that unilateral movement from Olympic style canoeing will damage the female body (sex/reproductive organs, urinary tract, breasts, etc.) potentially causing infertility, incontinence, stunt feminine development, and/or cause lopsided development.
The WomenCAN International Advisory Board was created to permanently dispel this myth, get it permanently categorized as sexual harassment and not a medical issue, and promote accountability to prevent its use as a tool to deter and intimidate women away from canoeing.
WomenCAN International Advisory Board Consensus Statement:
“No female athlete should be denied or discouraged from the opportunity to participate in any Olympic sport on the basis that she might sustain an injury to her sexual organs or the pelvic floor. There is no valid scientific or even anecdotal evidence of an increased risk for damage occurring as a direct result from participation in any sport, including Canoeing.”
See our July 2013 Blog for background.
- Revision of the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) “Consensus Statement on Sexual Harassment & Abuse in Sport” *
- to include the above Consensus Statement
- to update the definition of sexual/gender harassment to include this issue.
This revision would ensure proper channels for reporting this type of harassment, enable greater accountability and transparency, and inclusion of this topic in education and training;
- The International Canoe Federation (ICF) should endorse the IOC consensus statement and develop an official anti-harassment/abuse policy with permanent posting on the ICF web site. We recognize revision of the IOC Consensus Statement may take considerable time, however, the ICF can still develop its own general policy.