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The Journal Gazette

  • FILE - In this Feb. 9, 2018 file photo, a speed skating figure is displayed in front of the Alpensia Ski Jumping Center ahead of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. (AP Photo/Michael Probst, File)

  • FILE - In this May 23, 2018 file photo, U.S. Center for SafeSport President and CEO Shellie Pfohl testifies before the House Commerce Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee about the Olympic community's ability to protect athletes from sexual abuse, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Thursday, November 08, 2018 12:20 pm

Govt Olympic funds not usable for abuse probes

EDDIE PELLS | Associated Press


DENVER – A growing sex-abuse problem in Olympic sports has led to a steady stream of Congressional hearings and a three-year grant worth $2.2 million.

Yet not a penny of those federal funds can be used to fight the actual problem: investigating or resolving more than 800 open cases, many brought by victims themselves.

That leaves an ever-growing backlog for the U.S. Center for SafeSport, the organization that opened 20 months ago to investigate sex-abuse complaints in Olympic sports.

Shellie Pfohl, the head of the center, says nobody made her aware of the flaw in the funding program until after directions had been delivered about how to apply for the money.

A spokeswoman for Sen. Jerry Moran of Kansas, who is leading hearings on the sex-abuse problem, says lawmakers are looking for other ways to fund the center.


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