Reinstate Paralympic Sailing into 2020 Games is reporting that yesterday, ISAF President Croce met with representatives from the International Paralympic Committee in Bonn, Germany about potential re-inclusion of sailing on the 2020 Paralympic Program. No outcomes or summaries have been published by ISAF or IFDS about this meeting yet.
The meeting follows the February 1 announcement that sailing had been cut from the Paralympic programs. Among the reasons cited by the IPC for cutting the sport was that it had failed to demonstrate the minimum required participation rates. The IPC handbook with requirements for inclusion on the program says, “Only individual sports and disciplines widely and regularly practised in a minimum of thirty-two (32) countries and three (3) IPC regions may be considered for inclusion in the Paralympic Games.”
Unrelated to this, today ISAF has posted a number of new job listings. Most of these are outward facing, in terms of dealing with the media. Media coverage is clearly an issue that is somewhat contentious inside the organization as IFDS vice-president Bernard Destrubé was referenced in an insidethegames.biz report as blaming the media for failing to make the sport attractive to people with disabilities. ISAF has their most recent Strategic Plan from 2013, and it provides no references to increasing media attention. In an IFDS context, the IPC application criticized the sport’s initiatives to increase attraction of the sport and the information they provided about their website metrics. The IPC quoted their application in leaked documentsas saying, “Media appeal of 80 disabled athletes in an environment, just as abled sailors.”