Revisiting the National Sports Policy Part II
The National Sports Policy of any country is intended to guide the development process. In our case consideration is given to the inculcation of values deemed critical to the development of the whole person. The framers of the policy thought that Fair Play should be enshrine in the document to encourage Vincentians at all levels and all ages to understand that involvement in sport must be undertaken in an atmosphere of respect for each other, regardless of the role being performed and to abide by the rules. Honesty is to be admired in sport and held aloft.
2.1 Sport participation is to be facilitated as far as possible in the context of the highest ethical standards consistent with the concept of Fair Play.
This particular aspect of the policy should be integrated into the constitution of every sporting organisation functioning in St Vincent and the Grenadines. This is not now the case. Some sporting organisations seem fearful of even so much as suggesting that there is such a thing as high ethical standards to be maintained in sport.
2.2 Priority should be given to raising awareness of the promotion of Fair Play as integral to sport and physical activity through the use of campaigns, awards, educational materials and training opportunities. Such initiatives shall be encouraged by Government and all Organisations involved in the administration of sport.
In St Vincent and the Grenadines football begins its major competitions with the youngsters carrying the FIFA Fair Play Flag onto the playing arena ahead of the competing teams while the FIFA Fair Play Anthem is being played. FIFA encourages its affiliates to follow its lead by honouring those players who compete in a manner characterised by a strong sense of Fair Play and to hold in high esteem any individual who has displayed a particular action consistent with the concept. This is hardly ever done.
Indeed in contrast to the FIFA intent in promoting Fair Play it remains a travesty that many football games are played as if it is a war that is being fought on a different battlefield.
In St Vincent and the Grenadines little attention is played to Fair Play far less to promote it. Referees have been abused and in some cases struck by players and supporters of teams who are dissatisfied with decisions taken during the course of a game.