A national task force is urging a significant hike in drug tests for Canadian university football players and the establishment of a "report doping in sport" hotline.
In response to an unprecedented number of flunked doping tests conducted on CIS players in 2010, the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport gathered a task force of experts to examine the issue of performance-enhancing drugs in football.
"The task force members unanimously agreed that use of performance-enhancing drugs by football players poses a serious health risk to children and youth who want to try to emulate their heroes," Paul Melia, president of the CCES, said in a statement released Tuesday.
Among the recommendations in the task force's report:
* Anti-doping and ethical decision-making information be incorporated in provincial and territorial education curriculums to target young athletes in and out of the sport of football;
* Performance-enhancing drug education be mandatory for coaches and strength and conditioning personnel;
* A significant increase in testing from the current level of 2-3% to 30% of the total number of football players;
* A "report doping in sport" hotline and an associated web-based reporting tool.
The task force hopes the report generates discussion across government departments, education ministries, sport authorities and corporate Canada.
A second task force, established by Ontario University Athletics, analyzed PED education programs offered to OUA student-athletes, coaches and administrators.
The OUA task force said "more effective and robust education is needed to combat the scourge of PEDs."
It said there is a strong will among OUA universities to enhance doping education not only for football, but all sports.
The CCES task force backs the OUA group's recommendations.