Sen. Scott demands investigation into USOC, USA Gymnastics over molestation scandal
by Staff Reports | February 9, 2018 9:41 pm
Last Updated: February 9, 2018 at 4:22 pm
Sen. Tim Scott joined colleagues on Thursday to unveil a resolution that would ultimately establish a special committee in the Senate to investigate the U.S. Olympic Committee and USA Gymnastics regarding how team Dr. Larry Nassar was allowed to sexually abuse female gymnasts for more than two decades.
“The Olympics start in just a couple of days, and every single athlete should know that we care, and that we’re paying attention,” Scott said Wednesday. “We take great pride in our Olympic athletes, and they should know that as they sacrifice so much to train and represent the United States of America on the world stage, they should be safe.”
Scott said that USOC and USAG “have clearly failed our athletes.”
“My heart goes out to the women affected and their families,” he said. “This investigation is so important because we should know what happened, to make sure it doesn’t happen again Every single person should be respected. Every single woman should be respected, and it did not happen. It cannot happen again.”
Specifically, the resolution establishes a special committee of the Senate that is tasked with:
- Investigating the USOC and national sports governing bodies, including USA Gymnastics, and determining the extent to which these organizations were complicit in the criminal or negligent behavior of their employees relative to sexual abuse;
- Identifying and recommending solutions to the systemic failures at the USOC and national sports governing bodies, including USA Gymnastics, that allowed for pervasive sexual abuse to continue for decades;
Identifying actions that must be taken by the USOC and national sports governing bodies, including USA Gymnastics, to ensure increased transparency and protections for children, athletes and their families; and
- Making findings and recommendations on any additional actions that may be necessary to hold the USOC and USA Gymnastics accountable.
On Friday, members of this group called on USOC CEO Scott Blackmun to step down in light of press reports that Blackmun was aware of sexual abuse allegations against ex-team USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar in 2015. This news came a week after Blackmun published a letter to Team USA, pledging an independent investigation to uncover “who knew what and when,” while failing to admit his own supposed direct knowledge of allegations that were brought to his attention.