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S$25 million boost for self-employed people, businesses in sports; new framework to address abuse and harassment

02:49 Min
Self-employed people and businesses in the sports sector will receive more support as part of a S$25 million boost to the Sports Resilience Package, announced Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Edwin Tong on Monday (Mar 8).

SINGAPORE: Self-employed people and businesses in the sports sector will receive more support as part of a S$25 million boost to the Sports Resilience Package, announced Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Edwin Tong on Monday (Mar 8).
This brings the total amount of COVID-19 support measures under this package to S$75 million.
During the Committee of Supply speech for the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth (MCCY), Mr Tong said that a new Self-Employed Person Project grant will support collaborations among sports freelancers and other organisations for projects that “enhance the health and wellness of Singaporeans”.

The grant is capped at S$25,000 per application. More details will be available on Sport Singapore’s (SportSG) website in April.
The Government will provide another S$22.5 million to the existing Enterprise Innovation and Capability Development Grant. The grant was piloted at S$3 million last year for the sports industry to build stronger digital capabilities, develop innovative solutions and promote upskilling, said Mr Tong.

The grant will be extended over five years until FY2025.

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READ: Additional S$20 million for Arts and Culture Resilience Package to support freelancers and businesses

The minister also announced an extension of the Operating Grant for businesses until December, so as to continue to provide short-term financial support to critical sport businesses. It will support up to 15 per cent of total operating expenses, capped at S$10,000 per month.
The grant supports businesses classified as private academies and clubs, private league operators and facility operators, said Parliamentary Secretary for Culture, Community and Youth Eric Chua.
In addition, the Training Allowance Grant will run for another year, from April this year to March 2022. Coaches who take up CoachSG courses beyond their Continuing Coach Education hours will be offered a S$7.50 per hour allowance.
The Structured Mentorship Programme will also be extended until March 2022.
“MCCY and SportSG are committed to helping coaches and instructors deepen their expertise and develop skill sets that will benefit them both in the short and long-term,” said MCCY in a factsheet.
To address harassment and abuse in sport, the Government will introduce a Safe Sport Programme, announced Mr Tong.
The Safe Sport Commission was launched in 2019 to tackle misconduct in sports.
As part of the programme, a Unified Code against misconduct will set out the definitions of sexual, psychological and physical misconduct, and will include cyberbullying, hazing and online harassment. 
This will provide the sporting community with a “shared reference point” against inappropriate behaviour, he said.

READ: IN FOCUS: Tackling sexual misconduct in the sports and fitness industry

The code was developed in consultation with experts in safeguarding children and vulnerable groups, government agencies and non-governmental organisations. Leaders in the Singapore Olympic and Paralympic movement were also consulted and there will be a wider community consultation with athletes, parents, coaches and sport administrators in April.
For those affected by misconduct in the sector, the Safe Sport Commission will offer a confidential third-party reporting channel and enhanced case management.
The Safe Sport Commission will also introduce an accreditation framework to allow sport participants to identify organisations committed to participant safety.
The criteria will be based on the organisation’s adoption of the Unified Code, implementation of relevant policies and training and certification of those involved. It will also consider if the organisations have “robust” incident management and disciplinary processes that ensure accountability in cases of misconduct, said MCCY.
Those that meet the criteria will have a Safe Sport Mark.
With the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games set to happen later this year, MCCY and SportSG will schedule participating athletes, coaches and officials to receive the COVID-19 vaccination.

READ: IN FOCUS: Dedication amid the delay - Team SG prepares for an Olympics which remain in doubt
READ: Team Singapore 'monitoring situation closely' as it gears up for Tokyo Olympics amid COVID-19 outbreak

The agencies are also facilitating travel for athletes to participate in overseas competitions to earn qualifying spots at the games.
“We are supporting our athletes’ training, while keeping an eye on the global pandemic situation,” said Mr Tong, adding that safety remains the Government’s “utmost priority”.

Source: CNA/cc


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