REP LIEU STATEMENT ON BILL TO PROTECT ATHLETES FROM ABUSE BEING SIGNED INTO LAW
WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Ted W. Lieu (D-Los Angeles County) released the following statement after the President signed into law the Empowering Olympic, Paralympic, and Amateur Athletes Act, a bill Rep. Lieu introduced along with Reps. Susan Brooks (R-IN), John Curtis (R-UT), and Diana DeGette (D-CO) to protect athletes from sexual, emotional, and physical abuse. The bill, which is a companion to Sens. Jerry Moran and Richard Blumenthal's Senate legislation, strengthens legal liability and accountability mechanisms for the U.S. Olympic Committee and national governing bodies when athletes are abused. The bill also restores a culture of putting athletes first by establishing clear procedures and reporting requirements, imposing responsibilities to protect athletes, and bolstering the Office of the Ombudsman as an independent resource for athletes. In addition, the legislation strengthens the independence of the U.S. Center for SafeSport, which provides abuse prevention education and training and investigates sexual abuse allegations made by athletes.
“I am grateful that this important bill to put athletes first has been signed into law,” Rep. Lieu said. “For far too long, athletes have suffered from a culture that ignores and tolerates abuse. I’m pleased our bill, a bipartisan effort championed by Sens. Moran and Blumenthal in the Senate, and Reps. Brooks, Curtis and DeGette and me in the House, will now become law. This new law will help ensure that those responsible for abuse against athletes – and those that allow it – are held accountable.”