American sprint hurdler Lolo Jones has labelled the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as “irresponsible and demeaning” for the stance taken in the coronavirus pandemic.
The outbreak of coronavirus has killed over 13,000 people to date while another 307, 600 people are suffering from the deadly virus. The virus caused many qualifying events to be postponed or cancelled in the last two months. Some athletes are unable to train due to the containment measures in their country.
The IOC, however, maintained there is no need for “any drastic decisions at this stage.”
Max Siegel, the USATF CEO, wrote to U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee asking them to advocate for a postponement of the 2020 Olympic Games.
“I am glad USATF spoke up,” said Jones. “IOC encouraged all athletes to continue to prepare for the Olympic Games Telling athletes to carry on as normal amidst this public health crisis is irresponsible and demeaning,” said Jones.
“Athletes are concerned for their health and the health of their families. – Many cannot “continue to prepare for the Olympic Games” in any capacity. This international emergency is unprecedented, and the IOC must acknowledge that sport takes a backseat to public health,” added Jones.=
IOC Athletes’ Commission member Hayley Wickenheiser earlier this week claimed the IOC’s insistence the Olympics will go ahead as planned was “irresponsible”.
Olympic pole vault champion Katerina Stefanidi of Greece also accused the IOC of leaving athletes “at-risk”.
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