Swimming Australia is holding crisis meetings and forming an independent panel to investigate the experiences of young swimmers following reports of toxic coaching and abuse in the sport. The panel will convene to determine whether there are institutional problems within swimming in Australia. In addition, Swimming Australia’s ethics and integrity committee will be conducting their own investigation into claims.

This comes after reports of misogyny and abuse by coaches when young swimmers are told they are under-performing. Unfortunately, following the announcement more stories of verbal abuse including ‘fat-shaming’ and disproportionate punishments for athletes who have not met their coaches’ expectations have come to light.

Elite level sports come with intense pressure and as we have seen with the recent Australian Human Rights Commission’s report on Gymnastics in Australia, the power imbalance between athletes and coaches can create a toxic and abusive environment which can have lasting effects on the athletes.

We are currently working with our clients on these claims. If you would like to discuss a claim or have been a witness to these matters please contact Alison McNamara alison.mcnamara@chamberlains.com.au or Jon May jon.may@chamberlains.com.au from Chamberlains Law firm to see how we can help.