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Sexual violence in sport: "I feel useful in this fight", says Maracineanu


Surprised herself by the number of reports received, the Minister of Sports wants to involve a maximum of sport actors in the fight against

While she will draw up this Wednesday a first report on the follow-up of reports of sexual violence, the Minister of Sports Roxana Maracineanu wants to go further in training and prevention.

On February 22, you launched the national convention on the prevention of sexual violence in sport. Is awareness real?

ROXANA MARACINEANU.We are making progress in sharing responsibilities. Some federation presidents want to end omerta. I made them aware of the subject, as well as the presidential candidates, because the public service delegation is not limited to the organization of competitions and the constitution of national teams. The federations must become more involved in this topic of protecting the public. The values ​​of sport are not just words, it must be translated into actions, awareness plans and it must extend to the smallest association. We have concentrated our efforts on the processing of cases, all the cases reported are being processed or in progress. We created a unique collaboration around this theme. We must now go further in training and prevention.

Did you expect to receive so many reports?

Honestly, no. When I was appointed Minister, I wanted to revisit the coaching - coaching authority relationship, in order to avoid the influence. I was sensitive to the possible psychological damage that the notion of dependence can cause. I did not measure the severity of the cases, nor their number. This wave of testimonies from former top athletes in the media made it possible to show that we were faced with a social problem that affected sport and that action needed to be taken.

Some victims have written to you personally ...

And others come to see me when I travel. Victims who are now adults tell me that having opened the debate allowed them to free themselves, to talk about it to their loved ones. Thanks to the sportswomen who spoke, the status of victim was recognized. Now, we absolutely have to identify and punish predators who are in contact with children. We have a real project to carry out. For languages ​​to loosen, we must mobilize federations, clubs, technical managers, communities but also parents. I feel useful in this fight. Beyond the current reforms, it is a real social issue for which our agents are also very mobilized.

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