From Inside the Games

New World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) compliance standards in which governing bodies can be sanctioned for violating rules have come into force today.

This marks the first time that International Federations and major event organisers can be handed any sort of concrete punishment by WADA rather than just a statement of non-compliance.

A range of “graded, predictable and proportionate sanctions” can be issued for those violating rules ranging from fines to a six-month probation period to the worst case scenario of a suspension.

All sanctions, however, must be awarded by the Court of Arbitration of Sport (CAS) rather than WADA directly.

The International Standard for Code Compliance by Signatories (ISCCS) was introduced in the aftermath of the Russian doping scandal and will theoretically make it easier for action to be taken against bodies like the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) when they break the rules.

A new amendment to the World Anti-Doping Code also stipulates that International Federations and organisers of major events must “accept bids for World Championships and other International Events only from countries where the Government has ratified, accepted, approved or acceded to the UNESCO Convention and the National Olympic Committee and National Anti-Doping Organisation (NADO) are in compliance with the Code”.

The changes coming into force today do not mean, however, that these bodies will be barred from awarding events to Russia, even though RUSADA remains non-compliant.

This is because WADA have received legal advice that the new rules are only enforceable if they relate to new cases of non-compliance emerging after today.

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