Sports New Zealand is the national body that governs sporting and recreational activities in the country. After the organisation undertook an extensive consultation, interviewing local businesses, sports teams, and members of the general public, a report was distributed. The publication made 22 recommendations to the government on how to improve local sporting integrity and betting, one of which presented the suggestion that the Macolin Convention be signed.
The Macolin Convention, otherwise referred to as the Convention on the Manipulation of Sports Competitions, is a European set of rules that focuses on significantly reducing the possibility of match fixing. In response to this specific recommendation, the New Zealand government said that it would consider signing up, but further research would be required. If the convention was signed, it would incur a significant financial cost, as well require several changes to legislature.
But the Macolin Convention suggestion was just one angle approached in the report, with multiple other options presented. The majority of these focused on industry related gambling, and how to reduce negative impact on the country’s youth. One entry suggested having a dedicated child protection officer in all sporting organisations, as well as establishing a youth protection policy in government. It was also mentioned that sporting team coaches could be more thoroughly educated on child protection.
A similar proposal was put forward in regards to match fixing. It was suggested that a new government funded programme be launched, aimed at educating sports industry members on match fixing. Or more specifically; how to recognise the symptoms and signs that match fixing is taking place. The programme, should it be established, would link with a national reporting service that allowed relevant information to be shared directly with officials.
Drug Free Industry
The final section of the report related to doping in the industry. The local agency, Drugfree Sport NZ, has already been established, and works tirelessly to clamp down on drug-related cheating in the country. But it was implied that more could be done. Recommendations were that efforts be expanded drastically, with all industry organisations expanding their efforts to work in conjunction with Drugfree Sport NZ, working to eliminate the problem once and for all.
In conclusion, Sport NZ declared that they were already underway in setting up a central online database and repository. Once fully stablished, the online resource would not only help government bodies work with one another, but help the public understand the guidelines that are in place to keep sports and betting in the country fair, safe and lawful.