A victim of abuse. Research shows athletes are often reluctant to report abuse. (Pixabay File)

New app provides pathway for young athletes to report abuse

App launched in US four months ago already received 40 reports of abuse

After disturbing revelations around the world of young athletes suffering abuse, a new app, Player’s Health Protect, has been developed to provide a discreet pathway to report abuse and misconduct instantly and privately.

Developed by former Calgary Stampeders wide-receiver Tyrre Burks, the app was launched in the U.S. four months ago and the company says it has grown to 70,000 users. They also say that during this time, 40 documented abuse incidents have been reported, with 35 of them actionable.

Reports are handled at the company by an independent SafeSport Coordinator. If a report from a user is sexual in nature, it is sent to authorities within 24 hours and if it is not, “due diligence is done” and sent to “the authority within the organizations” to be investigated. The company say all data is confidential and uses industry best practices.

ALSO READ: Coroner service launches interactive unidentified human remains tool

The app is one element of Burks’ larger company called Player’s Health and forms “part of a suite of risk management software created to support the holistic health of amateur athletes.”

Player’s Health also caters for the well-being of athletes in other areas such as injury prevention and management, in a way similar to the data driven approach favoured by professional sports teams. They are also developing staff screening services for administrators to use.

Recently launched in Canada, the platform’s injury management tool is called Player’s Health Rehab, which monitors and tracks injuries and treatment, in an effort for young athletes to avoid burn-out or more severe injuries.

ALSO READ: Oak Bay Barbarians Alumni raise $12,000 for B.C. champions

Player’s Health is free to amateur sports organizations, schools and athletes.

The company says that because phones are often the favoured tool of communication for children, it makes sense to have a reporting app on their phone. “The Player’s Health Protect app was developed to provide an anonymous solution for athletes to report threats, hazing, and abuse that sometimes occur without notice,” a statement from Player’s Health said.

“Our primary mission is the safety of young athletes,” says Tyrre Burks, CEO of Player’s Health. “I love everything about sports and what I love about sports isn’t what we are seeing in the headlines right now. I want to remove the darkness in sport and make it a great experience for everyone. As an athlete, parent and coach I have witnessed first hand how difficult some of these challenges can be and developed these tools in response to my own experiences.”

ALSO READ: District champs Peninsula Midget A Eagles power into provincials

Michelle Peterson, an expert in sport organization abuse prevention and who advises the company, says that often policies and procedures aren’t enough for young people to report abuse.

“There are just too many obstacles to overcome. Kids are on their phones all the time,” she says. “This is a tool they use, so it’s easier for them to report.” Peterson notes that often athletes are reluctant to report abuse for fear of their careers being derailed by the abuser or enablers. She says research suggests youth often don’t report abuse directly, with most reports coming from parents or once they have grown into adulthood.

For additional information visit playershealth.com.



nick.murray@peninsulanewsreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Canada Women’s Rugby 7s Team land at home after series triumph

Next stop at Langford offers Olympic qualification

Two-sailing waits continue Victoria to Tsawwassen

Backlog continues despite extra sailings over Easter

PHOTOS: Green Party Leader Elizabeth May says ‘I do’ on Earth Day

May and John Kidder got married Monday morning in Victoria

Second earthquake in less than two hours strikes off Vancouver Island

The first earthquake happened at 1:27 p.m., the second at 2:44 p.m.

Saanich soccer player survives bout with flesh eating disease

Harinder Sandhu picked up the disease after soccer game

Homeless activists outside Notre Dame demand ‘a roof too’

Wealthy people have donated millions to effort to rebuild cathedral after devastating fire

United Way opens grants to help charities tackle social issues

Charities north of the Malahat can apply for grants $2,000 to $20,000

POLL: How often does your family use BC Ferries?

Navigating the lineups for BC Ferries is a way of life for… Continue reading

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for the week of April 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Sri Lanka invokes war-time military powers after nearly 300 killed in Easter bombings

Sri Lanka’s minister of tourism says 39 foreign tourists were killed in the Easter Sunday attacks

Man’s body found in popular Cowichan Valley hiking area

Police say death not suspicious after discovery in Stoney Hill area overlooking Saltspring Island

Multiple sailing waits as BC Ferries deals with Easter Monday traffic

89 extra sailings had been added to the long weekend schedule

Vancouver Island-based company provides glass alternatives to plastic straws

Enviro Glass Straws now producing more than 60,000 staws each year

Most Read