Sport plays a significant role in the lives of children, and as the national steward for sport in the United States, the USOC has an important responsibility to create positive, safe and secure environments for American athletes. To further advance the safety and well-being of all U.S. athletes – regardless of age, gender or sport – the USOC has invested in programs to shape the foundation of the safe sport movement nationally.

Working Group for Safe Training Environments
In 2010, the USOC convened the Working Group for Safe Training Environments and charged it with the task of developing a set of recommendations concerning misconduct in sport. The diverse group, which included individuals from the Olympic family as well as external experts, focused on four primary objectives:

  • Address sexual and physical misconduct in sport
  • Review the guidelines across sport and sport-related organizations for responding to these issues
  • Assess the needs of athletes, coaches, staff, National Governing Bodies, clubs and other sport organizations
  • Develop a set of recommendations to promote athlete well-being

Safe Sport Program
Based on the Working Group’s report, in 2011, the USOC hired a director of safe sport tasked with developing a robust abuse prevention and education program to address misconduct in sport by providing information, training and resources. The report also led to the March 2012 launch of the Safe Sport program, and the April 2013 launch of a public awareness campaign, Make the Commitment: Stop Abuse in Sport.

Through Safe Sport, the USOC delivered a first-of-its-kind abuse prevention program that is national in scale, available free to the public, and shared through an engaged network comprised of 47 NGBs and 34 Multi-Sport Organizations with a combined reach of 73 million members. Participating organizations were encouraged to develop and tailor the Safe Sport program to meet their unique needs. 

U.S. Center for Safe Sport
In June 2014, the USOC reaffirmed its commitment to advance the safety and well-being of American athletes by approving the creation of the U.S. Center for Safe Sport – an independent entity designed to oversee education programs, and investigate and adjudicate misconduct claims in sports that are managed by USOC-sanctioned NGBs. Participation in the new entity is a condition of continued membership in the USOC.

A CEO was hired and a nine-member, independent board of directors was appointed that includes a diverse membership of subject-matter experts in the areas of abuse prevention, investigation and compliance. The USOC is investing more than $10 million to fund the center's first five years, with NGBs combining to provide another $5 million.

Launched in March 2017 and based in Denver, the U.S. Center for Safe Sport is the first national organization of its kind dedicated to preventing and responding to all forms of violence, abuse and misconduct in and through sport, regardless of the athlete’s age or competitive level. Its cornerstone services are rooted in education and will deliver actionable tools to both prevent and respond to abuse in sport. The center’s comprehensive resource base will equip administrators, athletes, parents and coaches with essential tools, while its national awareness campaign will shape public opinion around the issue and serve as the forward face of the prevention movement throughout U.S. sport. For more information, visit SafeSport.org.


Working Group for Safe Training Environments Recommendations to the USOC Board of Directors - September 2010

Board of Directors - Meeting Minutes