Page 5065 - Week 13 - Thursday, 29 November 2018

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would be long term, even as the industry continues to evolve. This work will continue throughout the development of a number of pieces of subordinate legislation to support this bill.

Extensive research and evaluation was also undertaken to build an evidence-based framework that would offer ACT participants, including those that visit us from interstate or internationally, the best possible framework to conduct and participate in events. This research included analysis of academic literature, meeting with academics, examining statistics and looking into a number of coronial inquiries relating to deaths in combat sports. This includes implementing the recommendations from the coronial inquiry into the death of boxer David Browne in 2015 during the 12th round of his bout in New South Wales.

The design of the bill also allows for specific details, such as medical equipment to be required at events, to be updated quickly through subordinate legislation as best practice recommendations change, or as a result of incidents, including interstate and international events that directly correlate to events in the ACT. We have taken the best of what works in other jurisdictions, such as screening of applicants and medical supervision of events, but have uniquely defined what combat sports are covered by illustrating what techniques are covered instead of individual combat sports. This will address issues of legislation becoming out of date as the industry evolves.

Current legislation does not provide for a regulatory compliance function. This means that combat sports events in the ACT are not checked by authorised officers once they are underway, and have passed the original event application process.

This bill establishes inspectorate and enforcement functions. This will bring our regulation in line with other regulating jurisdictions and ensure that the safety of contestants is at the forefront of considerations in undertaking these events. Inspectors will be able to check and monitor safety compliance, such as ensuring that all medical checks have been undertaken and that essential medical equipment is available at the contest. This will reduce the risk of a serious injury or fatality occurring in the ACT; for example, a contestant competing with concussion or traumatic brain injury, which could potentially result in death.

Where noncompliance has been determined, a number of administrative sanctions and new offences may apply. These will act both as a deterrent to this behaviour and to improve integrity in the industry by addressing known issues. These have been designed with careful consideration to human rights principles and balancing the seriousness of the conduct with the potential for catastrophic outcomes.

All industry participants, including promoters, officials and contestants, will be required to register to participate. This registration includes background checking of the applicant’s criminal history, as well as examining other law enforcement intelligence. This will improve integrity by ensuring that only those that pass this public interest test will participate. However, the registration system will not automatically preclude an applicant from participating based on criminal background. This is particularly the case for contestants for whom combat sports can be a useful

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