Assurance Framework

Assurance FrameworkBackground to the Revision of the National Anti-Doping Policy

UKAD is working with the UK Government and Devolved Administrations to update the UK National Anti-Doping Policy (‘Policy’) to ensure that it continues to reflect contemporary anti-doping practices and procedures.

The current version of the Policy was issued in 2009 by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). It sets out the anti-doping roles and responsibilities of UKAD, National Governing Bodies (NGBs), Sports Councils and the National Anti-Doping Panel, and can be found here. UKAD is responsible for managing the Policy’s day-to-day operation.

In October 2019, the government conducted a public consultation on the Policy, inviting stakeholders to provide feedback on the responsibilities of the various organisations covered by it. UKAD is in the process of reviewing this feedback and updating the Policy, in conjunction with DCMS, whilst consulting with other organisations that may wish to also adopt the revised Policy. 

What is the Assurance Framework?

UKAD will be launching an Assurance Framework alongside the revised Policy. 

The Assurance Framework sets out the minimum standards that an NGB needs to meet to comply with the Policy. By meeting the requirements in the framework, an NGB will be able to ensure that it has the right anti-doping policies and practices in place to help mitigate the risk of doping within their sport, whilst contributing to a clean sport culture across all UK sport. 

Included within the framework will be a number of different actions and responsibilities covering all aspects of anti-doping, including education, communications and governance. To create the Assurance Framework, UKAD has held in-depth consultation meetings with several NGBs from across the UK, from a range of different sports of varying sizes and levels of resource. Additional feedback was gained from NGB briefing events held across the UK in March 2020.

The Policy also outlines the sanctions that may be imposed on organisations that do not comply with their Assurance Framework responsibilities. However, UKAD’s aim is to assist all NGBs to be compliant. To support NGBs, UKAD has significantly invested in staff and resources to ensure they have guidance and documents to meet the requirements. The suite of available resources will include access to templates, guides and workshops. Dedicated staff will be available to discuss any aspect of the Policy and Assurance Framework. 

Launch and Timeframes

UKAD and the Government are working towards a launch of both the revised Policy and Assurance Framework later in 2020. 

However, there are currently no confirmed timeframes for the launch, as the finalisation process, which involves various external organisations, is being affected by the Covid-19 outbreak. 

When launched, the Assurance Framework will be made available to all NGBs digitally, alongside supporting commentary, outlining the purpose of each responsibility and how the NGB can meet them. The Assurance Team at UKAD will be offering further support too, including via individual meetings/sessions and video/phone calls. 

NGBs will be given a significant period of time in which to meet their responsibilities, with evidence of compliance to be submitted electronically to UKAD by a deadline to be confirmed at the launch of the Policy and Assurance Framework. In subsequent years it is likely that NGBs will find compliance easier to achieve, as once implemented, some of the requirements in the framework may remain the same from year to year.

Additional Information

Throughout March 2020, UKAD conducted a series of briefings across the UK aimed at NGB Chairs and Chief Executives. These briefings were designed to highlight the proposed NGB Assurance Framework responsibilities, and to seek any further feedback prior to their finalisation. To make sure every partner has the opportunity to access the information, UKAD has produced a video of the content. 

If you wish to receive a copy of this video, or have any other queries about the Policy or Assurance Framework, please contact the Assurance Team at UKAD via assurance@ukad.org.uk.