Olympians and National Team Members Speak Out

Dominique Moceanu, Olympic Gold Medalist, US Women’s Gymnastics

“I firmly believe that it is the shared duty of parents, coaches, gym club owners, and governing bodies of sport to give our young athletes a positive learning atmosphere free from any type of abuse, without exception.  Finally, with Safe4Athletes, we have an organization dedicated to taking the proactive steps to help us all keep to our responsibilities and look out for the well-being of athletes.

The education and assistance that Safe4Athletes provides makes me thankful that our athletes and their loved ones have a resource they can utilize if they need to voice concerns.

Implementing the policies of Safe4Athletes in sports clubs and gyms across America and beyond is of paramount importance.  Plus, it is a movement we all can be a part of, whether we have experienced abuse or mistreatment at the hands of a coach or not.  As a longtime advocate for the safety of athletes, I’m a proud supporter of this organization.  Thanks to their terrific work and mission, no athlete should ever be afraid to speak up again. And on behalf of all athletes, I say thank you, Safe4Athletes!”

John Naber - Olympic Gold Medalist, Swimming 

“All the good of participating in sport can be negated if a young man or woman finds themselves bullied, abused or taken advantage of... especially if it’s by someone in a position of authority.  Teams, clubs, leagues and sport governing bodies need to protect those unable or unwilling to speak out about the abuse they have suffered or may suffer in the future.”

Greg Louganis - Four Time Olympic Gold Medalist - Diving

"With the pressures and stresses of athletic competition, our youth need a safe environment to pursue there dreams of excellence, in vulnerable situations to navigate the field of play. Let's keep those places of training and learning safe!"

Amy Van Dyken-Rouen - Six Time Olympic Gold Medalist Swimming

“I want everyone to know how important it is to keep our young athletes safe. To let them be able to participate in an amazing part of their life, without having fear that something could happen to them that should never happen to a young child.”

Tracy Evans - 3-Time Olympian, Freestyle Skiing/Aerials

"Preventing sports abuse on all levels should be first and foremost in the minds NGB's and any sport organization.  Coaches, sports staff and administrators are suppose to be people that athletes can trust completely throughout their careers.  I am very glad to see that Safe4Athletes is an organization that provides not only a voice for athletes but also a much needed resource."

Sabrina Mar - Five Time National Gymnastics Champion 

"Sports are an invaluable tool for teaching our children strategies to be successful.  Our young athletes deserve every opportunity to pursue their dreams free from abuse and anxiety.  Safe4athletes not only increases public awareness about the dangers of physical and mental abuse in sports, it also gives children, parents and sports organizations a resource for dealing with those who seek to hurt our loved ones.  Supporting Safe4athletes lets everyone know that we will be more vigilant, more active and more involved in protecting our children."

Margaret Hoelzer - Two Time Olympic Silver Medalist and a Bronze - Swimming

"it's empowering to know that we are finally living in a society where remaining silent after abuse is not the only option.  Education/Knowledge is power and it is imperative that we educate athletes about the realities of abuse regardless of whether it is physical, emotional, or sexual.  As athletes, we put a great deal of trust in those that coach, mentor, and train us.  While this trust is imperative, it is just as critical that we know how to distinguish between helpful and harmful behavior. The importance of knowing that there is someone that we can turn to, someone that will listen to our story can make the difference in helping bring these stories to light. Without a system in place to bring awareness about abuse most of the knowledge that someone gains from knowing the difference between helpful and harmful is lost."

Missy Marlowe - Olympic Gymnast

“Coaches and sports administrators are in a unique and highly influential position over the athletes they train.  The trust necessary to succeed in athletics must be complete and total between athlete and mentor, and children are taught to obey, respect, and heed their coaches words.  In the event this trust is broken, or when a crime is committed that jeopardizes the inherent physical or sexual safety of an athlete, it is imperative that there are clearly defined steps for a family to take to report such behavior.  Athletics should always be a springboard towards a healthy and productive life.”

 Wendy Lian Williams - Olympic Bronze Medalist Diving

"Having a sport you love, a place to go to push yourself, to dream, and to test your limits can be a priceless life experience. But it must be a safe place, where you know you can trust your coaches, your teammates, and ultimately the organization to protect you and treat you with respect.

Safe4Athletes is a haven, a community where you can get all the support you need so that you can make sure you're in a training environment that feeds you. You deserve to be treated with respect and care, so that you can focus on your goal and follow your passion."

Cathy Marino - Sprint Kayaking - President SoCal Olympians and Paraiympians

"It is vital for all athletes, whether young or old to know their rights, to have the support to challenge inappropriate behavior and to know what options are available to overcome this type of abuse.  Having a safe place to go and to be supported is a practical resource that is long overdue.”

Tiffany Cohen - Two Time Olympic Gold Medalist - Swimming

"I wish there was an organization like Safe4Athletes in the 80's and 90's when some of my college teamates were dealing with the physical, emotional and spiritual aftermath of being sexually abused as children by their coaches. Educating parents and support staff of athletes is crucial in raising awareness about this horrific crime."

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Every athlete deserves a safe and positive sports environment. SPEAK UP if the way you are being treated feels wrong. 
If you need advice in sorting through a situation or concern. SAFE4ATHLETES is here to help.

Safe4Athletes: PO Box 650, Santa Monica, CA 90406 - Tax ID-46-2290559