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AFL can end drugs arms race: Greens

Media Release
Richard Di Natale 15 Aug 2013

Australian Greens spokesperson for sport and health, Senator Richard Di Natale, today called on the AFL to introduce a public register of supplements in the wake of Essendon's Mexican mystery drugs revelations.

“The AFL needs to look beyond the current scandal and make sure that the health of players is protected in the future,” said Senator Di Natale, a former GP and VFA footballer.

“As a doctor, I am really disturbed by reports that young athletes were injected with mystery substances sourced from overseas. This scandal isn’t just about whether a substance enhances performance; it’s about whether a substance is potentially harmful to athletes' health.

“The Greens recently released a comprehensive package of reforms that would tackle doping and protect the health of Australian athletes. Many of these reforms don’t require government action and so today I’m calling on the AFL to show some leadership and act on its own.

“The AFL should require all clubs to submit a list of every supplement they use to a central public register. Transparency is the best way to make sure that players will not be used as guinea pigs for mystery substances from Mexico.

“Not only would it help to protect the health of players, it would help protect the health of the game. Footy should be about the team with the best players, not the best chemist.

“A public register would take away the competitive advantage of supplements and put an end to the pharmacological arms race.”

Media Contact
Andrew Blyberg – 0457 901 600

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