President of the Portuguese Olympic Committee says that “it is not the first time” that there have been cases of harassment in sport – Observer
The president of the Portugal Olympic Committee (COP), José Manuel Constantino, told Lusa this Friday that sexual harassment in Portuguese sport, “a wound” in society, is not a new phenomenon, lacking “the articulation of combat strategies”. ” ”.
There is no evidence that events occurring in the event are of a different nature from those that occur in social contexts. There are no statistical data that do not exist in the world of sport to have an occurrence of other occurrences in greater than the social leader in an interview with Lusa.
The matter was published in several press releases from the then Público newspaper, after the disclosure of the footballers who followed the 2020/21 agenda, in a news item the week after the sexual harassment of the Vila do Conde club coach, Miguel Afonso, who currently he was the coach of Famalicão, and the sports director, Samuel Costa, was also the subject of a disciplinary process.
After the coach, the director: Famalicão suspends Samuel Costa after allegations of sexual harassment
As “it is not the first time” that the subject has arisen, sport is not “a world apart from other social practices”, so sexual harassment, abuse, “is also a wound” in this sector, “which needs to be addressed”. be denounced and fought.”
“That all known cases may be subject to denunciation, to be added and eventually sanctioned. At the same time, work towards education and civic training, so that these practices cannot occur in the world of sport. It is absolutely necessary to avoid, especially for families, to continually give guarantees that the world of sport fights practices and does everything to combat them for occurrences”, he declared.
Among several warnings, José Manuel Constantino stands out as a problem between men and women, but also between men and women, in this case something “that also exists in sport but is completely camouflaged and has some disability”.
One concern is the president of COP Portugal to follow a “trend that can be verified in international contexts”, that of the abandonment of children and cases of, by will by will by decision of the parents, after their designation.
In April, 20 figures led the organization in a statement that warned of the prevalence of these phenomena in the sports universe, praising the phenomena formed by figures from various sectors, from Olympic champions and other important figures in the arts.
Analyzing the type of sexual violence incident in the context and lamenting the lack of “safe indicators regarding the numbers”, before a “perception that the problem is not residual”, the COP called for “the creation of a set of strategies” to combat.
“I think we preached in the desert. When it comes to the need to articulate attention to strategies, like another type of problems that occurred in the fight against the responsibility of sports systems, we are not responsible for the great responsibility or for the return of the organizations point of view, either with the policies or sporting responsibilities”, he lamented.
The COP felt “a little alone in this matter”, perhaps because it sought “not to go there, which is a media agenda, very sensitive and looking for ready answers on what requires consideration, study and debate”, and called attention “to the risk that there was, in the Portuguese sports system, for issues of abuse and harassment”.
“We were a little alone, isolated, in this observation. We continue to be concerned and, unfortunately, time proves to be right, that it is necessary to address the issue, adjust preventive measures so that failures are not natural, when it is not possible to find mechanisms of complaint and, no or not.
Taking into account the panorama in Portugal, there is “a lot to go, a lot to do”, so that this phenomenon “is not placed only when the communicational agenda justifies it”because a complaint has arisen or something that is made.
“Throughout, there are already proven cases of other situations, sometimes forgotten, that the issue is not about combat from different years”, he reinforced, demanding a new very firm attitude to combat these situations”.
The Athletes Commission (CAO), swimmer Diana Gomes said this Friday that the allegations of sexual abuse in serving sport help to bring down a “sil Olympic president of revenge, with shame” around the phenomenon.
“It was always a silence for fear of finding no fault, with the victim if you see sexual harassment or other type of abuse. (…) I think it’s great that you meet these barriers”, said Diana to the Lusa interview.
If he has never been through any situation of sexual harassment or abuse “in the first person”, he has known “later, through three situations”, three situations “that he had with coaches” throughout his career.
“I was super sad for them, because because. they didn’t talk about it at the time they answered me: out of shame, because they had been provoked. Ended up taking a lot of the blame“, outline.
With regard to preventive and combat work, Diana Gomes considers “a system in which victims feel that they will be protected, that they will not be jeopardized”.
This has been the way, they denounce and the victim is blamed. We lack the final trajectory in which the victim is really protected, tools and a whole system that will design and not export, as often turns out to be the case. In this case, I had to be as a player how to punch the table, to expose themselves to be able to export the theme”, he lamented.
Lacking “consolidation of the solution part”, from the platforms of complaint and final resolution to each case, monitoring the CAO president notes the “duty to society” of these professionals, in the work in favor of the sport.
In this context, it recently met with the Secretary of State for Youth and Sports, João Paulo Correia, to talk about the subject, based on a working group in the Government linked to the phenomenon.
At that meeting, she spoke “about the National Observatory on Violence Against Athletes”, about her ambassadorship, and about the difficulty that the organization has in “receiving completed complaints”.
“Very few reach the end and many, it is believed, is because they do not see a solution. That’s right around the corner, and we’re starting to think about the system and something to get out of violence,” she said.
As for the specific case that has been discussed and publicized during the week, he hopes “that the last reference to what was defined will be concrete, and not something light”.
“There is an example that there is an ending that corresponds to the athletes’ expectations, and eventually other cases will appear”, he shot.