News & Resources

USA Swimming to begin background screening

Jan 28, 2011 Matt Roesly

USA Swimming, which oversees all sanctioned swimming competition in the United States, has begun a program that will mandate background screening for all coaches, employees, volunteers and any other person officially associated with the sport, ABC News reports. The new screening policy comes after an ABC News 20/20 report uncovered a rash of dismissals from the governing body due to alleged sexual misconduct from coaches directed at athletes. ABC News reports USA Swimming dismissed 36 coaches for such behavior, forcing the organization to enhance screening measures of prospective employees. According to USA Swimming, the new background screening process is, "designed to deter individuals who should not be working with athletes from ever applying for membership. Additionally, it serves to identify any unsuitable criminal history of those individuals who do apply for membership." The background checks will not only target those with sexual crimes in their background. Jobseekers with pending charges or convictions stemming from gun-related crimes, animal abuse, drug use or possession and child endangerment will be barred, the news source reports.