Athletics Canada’s statement; University of Guelph terminates Coach Dave Scott-Thomas

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With respect to the ongoing review by the University of Guelph into complaints made by former and current student-athletes, the university announced the termination of Coach Dave Scott-Thomas.

He was on leave since October 2, 2019.

Athletics Canada statement:

Athletics Canada has been notified today of the result of the University of Guelph’s investigation into Coach Dave Scott-Thomas, and its’ decision as a result of said investigation.

Dave Scott-Thomas was Event Group Distance Coach with Athletics Canada in 2006-2007. Beginning in April 2013, and ending in March 2017, Athletics Canada had an agreement in place with the Speed River Track and Field Club (SRTFC) and Dave Scott-Thomas for endurance coaching services.  In April 2018, Athletics Canada completed a Memorandum of Understanding with the SRTFC and the University of Guelph, recognizing them as an Athletics Canada High Performance Centre of Excellence.

Over the years Dave Scott-Thomas served as a volunteer coach on the following national teams:

  • 2005 FISU Games – Head Coach
  • 2006 IAAF World Cross Country Championships – Head Coach
  • 2006 Coach European B Tour
  • 2008 IAAF World Cross Country Championships – Team Coach
  • 2009 FISU Games – Team Coach
  • 2011 NACAC Cross Country Championships – Head Coach
  • 2011 IAAF World Cross Country Championships – Head Coach
  • 2013 IAAF World Cross Country Championships – Team Coach
  • 2014 Commonwealth Games – Team Coach
  • 2015 Pan American Games – Team Coach
  • 2015 IAAF World Athletics Championships – Team Coach
  • 2016 IAAF World Half Marathon Championships – Team Coach
  • 2016 Olympic Games – Team Coach
  • 2017 IAAF World Athletics Championships – Team Coach
  • 2018 Commonwealth Games – Team Coach
  • 2019 FISU Games – Team Coach

Today, Athletics Canada has provided notice of termination to both SRTFC and the University of Guelph in regards to their recognition as a High Performance Centre of Excellence. Athletics Canada acknowledges and fully accepts the University of Guelph’s decision. The University of Guelph’s decision, as well as any other relevant information uncovered, will be forwarded to the independent Athletics Canada Office of the Commissioner for review and to establish any applicable consequences.

Athletics Canada, nor the independent Commissioners’ Office have received any complaints about Dave Scott-Thomas, the SRTFC or the University of Guelph since its inception in 2015. Athletics Canada is completing a thorough review of records to identify if complaints were received prior to 2015.

Athletics Canada views ethical conduct as a cornerstone in the fair administration of the sport of athletics. Everyone participating in athletics as an athlete, coach, integrated support team member, administrator, volunteer or staff member is entitled to participate in an environment that is free of harassment or discrimination. Athletics Canada does not tolerate conduct from its members that is not in line with the organization’s code of conduct, core values and / or beliefs.

In order to help maintain a Safe Sport environment, in July 2015, Athletics Canada instituted the independent Commissioner’s Office, staffed with three independent Commissioner’s. It was the first office of its kind in a national sport organization (NSO) dedicated to resolving complaints independently from the NSO. Just recently, Athletics Canada engaged Sport Law & Strategy Group to conduct a full review of the Athletics Canada Commissioner’s Office and its terms of reference to ensure strong governance moving forward.

We are confident in our current process that infringements of this type of behaviour, whether illegal or immoral, will be addressed via our Code of Conduct, Bylaws and the independent Commissioner’s Office. For more on Athletics Canada’s Safe Sport practices please visit www.athletics.ca/safesport.ca