PtG Article 05.09.2019

World Players Association to strengthen athlete voices at Play the Game 2019

Play the Game and the World Players Association are working together to feature the knowledge and experience of the global player movement. Members of the IOC, WADA and other athlete committees will also join the conference.

When the 11th edition of the Play the Game conference runs in Colorado Springs from 13-16 October, more athlete representatives are confirmed as speakers than ever before.

A conference collaboration with the World Players Association paves the way for the global player association movement to hold its Executive Board during the conference, facilitating presentations by and networking with some of the most prominent union leaders in sport.

“The player association movement has a long history of promoting and defending athlete rights. This has been overwhelmingly positive for not only ensuring the wellbeing of athletes, but also for the growth and development of many sports,” says Brendan Schwab, Executive Director of World Players Association, adding:

“It is pleasing that two of the most pressing issues to the governance of global sport – athlete voice and the human rights of all involved in sport, including the athletes – are front and centre on this year’s agenda.”

Play the Game is excited that the motto of this year’s conference ‘Athlete power on the rise’ is backed by the WPA, a group with increasing clout in international sports politics. The WPA brings together 85,000 professional players through more than 100 player associations in over 60 countries.

“Our aim with Play the Game 2019 is to ensure a wide spectrum of athlete perspectives, speaking to a number of the most pressing challenges in sport.  Our collaboration with World Players Association is a positive step in making this a reality.”

Over 150 speakers ready

The union officials will not be the only representatives of athletes at the conference. A few days ago, the IOC confirmed that two members of its Athlete Commission, James Tomkins from Australia and Emma Terho from Finland, will join an opening panel on athlete power.

Other athlete voices at Play the Game 2019 belong to:

  • Beckie Scott, chair of WADA’s athlete commission
  • Ben Sandford, member of WADA’s athlete commission
  • Han Xiao, chair of the USOPC Athletes’ Advisory Council
  • Ashley Labrie, Executive Director, Athletes Canada
  • Moritz Geisreiter, board member, Athleten Deutschland
  • Yuliya Stepanova, 800 meter runner, Russia/USA
  • Rob Koehler, Director General, Global Athlete

You can find these names and around 150 other speakers in the full programme of Play the Game 2019.

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See the programme for the conference and read more about speakers, registration and prices at the conference website.

Play the Game 2019 would not be possible without the generous support from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, and a great number of sponsors in Colorado Springs and Denmark. You can see the list of sponsors here.