Dear USA Swimming Family,
In light of recent media coverage, I would like to provide some
perspective on the very important subject matter discussed and the
commentary surrounding USA Swimming's Safe Sport efforts.
Let me be clear: USA Swimming does not tolerate sexual abuse or
misconduct, and I assure you that this organization is facing this
extremely serious issue with one very clear goal - protecting
children and athletes.
Every day we work hard to get better as an organization. We are
never complacent. We want to listen and to hear from you. We are
rightfully held to a high standard by our membership and our peers,
and we will continue to work tirelessly to educate members, put
policies in place, and empower clubs to create the best possible
environments for all members.
We will not shy away from acknowledging or supporting survivors
of abuse, and we will strive to ensure that there is never a lapse
of a support system again. We will continue to work hand-in-hand
with survivors, the U.S. Center for Safe Sport, and law enforcement
to hold wrongdoers accountable and remove them from our
While we disagree on several of the reported statements and many
of the conclusions in recent media reports, members were failed,
and we are doing everything we can to make sure it never happens
Our system of uncovering sexual abuse is not flawless, but it
has enabled USA Swimming to detect and prosecute members who have
engaged in this misconduct. Every year we have endeavored to
make our sport safer for our athletes and other members than the
year before. Since 2010, USA Swimming has created a leading
Safe Sport program with key resource materials for members, updated
its Code of Conduct, mandated abuse prevention training, and
created a public list of individuals banned for sexual
misconduct-related violations in a continued effort to identify and
remove offenders from the sport. This is and will be an on-going
process that has our full commitment.
The key aspect to the success of the Safe Sport program is for
every member to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity that
might be a violation of our Code of Conduct. We simply cannot
assume that those being abused will voluntarily come forward, even
if given the opportunity to do so in a confidential manner.
In order to be successful, it will require your active
participation. Working together we can strive to completely
eradicate sexual abuse from our organization.
For information on USA Swimming's Safe Sport program visit: https://www.usaswimming.org/talkingaboutsafesport
To report concerns to the U.S. Center for Safe Sport at: https://safesport.org/report-a-concern.
As an organization we can do more, and we will continue to do
more with your valued feedback, guidance, and involvement.
Tim Hinchey III
USA Swimming President and CEO