KINGSTON — Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, the Hon Olivia “Babsy” Grange, says that her ministry is currently in discussions with the University of the West Indies (UWI) on the possibility of establishing a wellness centre, specifically designed to serve athletes.
“It is a demonstration of my ministry’s commitment to collaboration that we are considering this project as one of Jamaica 50 Legacy Projects, which will come out of the celebration of our 50th anniversary (of independence) next year,” Miss Grange told last Saturday’s opening of the one-day “Anti-Doping in Sports” conference at the UWI, Mona.
Miss Grange said that the Government has the created a framework to build partnership and collaboration on various programmes and projects, through the development of Jamaica’s first comprehensive national sports policy. The National Sports Policy for Jamaica, a Green Paper, was tabled in the House of Representatives a week ago by the Minister, for discussion and debate.
Miss Grange told JIS News that the document has been produced to provide the guiding framework for overall national sports development; the promotion of a healthier society; and the strengthening of appropriate regulations and legislations to support and facilitate sporting initiatives and activities resulting in increased participation among all Jamaicans.
She said that she has made arrangements for the Green Paper to be easily accessed via the internet and, in addition, she will be sending hard copies to individuals, sporting entities and the media.
She said that it was instructive that the Anti-Doping Conference was being held in the Law Faculty of the UWI, as there too little focus on sports and the law, “which is indeed a critical component of the sports industry’s fight against doping in sports”.
The conference addressed a range of topics such as doping regulations, UWI testing programme, the arbitration process in Jamaica, sport medicine, nutrition and performance and mental wellness and sports. It was designed to create greater understanding of the need for the 2012 review of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) global anti-doping code, and to generate awareness about the rationale for scientific data and research into anti-doping control.
By Balford Henry, JIS Reporter & Editor