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Government sets out sports policy

"Exercise and sport for everyone" is one of the visions for a Swiss national sports policy. The Federal Sports Office has published a brief outline of some of the basic tenets of such a policy.

The office has 14 working groups looking at essentials such as advanced training of sports teachers, and the promotion of young sporting talents.

The director of the Federal Sports Office, Heinz Keller wants more local networking between sports clubs and schools, in order to discover and promote possible star sportsmen or women.

Keller thinks sports clubs and associations alone are overburdened by this task. Local, Cantonal, and Federal school authorities need to be included, to make talent promotion sustainable. A re-apportioning of finance is also being envisaged.

Another vision concerns a Swiss national policy on doping. Parliament is at the moment revising the law, so that peripheral figures like physicians and physiotherapists would be punished for doping offences, rather than athletes.

However, the scope of a doping policy would be wider: questions involving prevention, information, tests, punishment, and research would be co-ordinated.
And the concept of a national doping agency is being studied.

The draft sports policy is due to be given to the cabinet in December, and it is to be discussed in January 2001.

by Peter Haller

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