Journal of Legal Aspects of Sport <p>The <em>Journal of Legal Aspects of Sport</em> (JLAS) aims to increase the understanding and advancement of legal issues as applied to all aspects of sport. This peer-reviewed jorunal publishes manuscripts from a variety of disciplines, covering legal aspects relating to sport, recreation, and related fields for the purpose of informing policy, advancing the body of knowledge, and influencing decision-making. As the flagship journal of the Sports &amp; Recreation Law Association since 1991, <em>JLAS</em> serves as an interdisciplinary outlet to meet the needs of researchers, practitioners, and policymakers.</p> en-US (Thomas Baker, III, J.D., Ph.D) (Ted Polley) Tue, 28 Aug 2018 13:45:58 -0400 OJS 60 Guest Editors’ Introduction to JLAS Special Issue on Athlete Activism and Sports Social Responsibility <p>When San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick knelt during the national anthem prior to National Football League (NFL) games during the 2016 season, he quickly became a symbol of a renewed era of athlete activism, triggering collegiate and professional athlete activists across the country to join demonstrations and sparking national conversations about racism and police brutality. But athlete activism is much broader, extending to philanthropic work such as NFL wide receiver Brandon Marshall’s efforts to spread mental health awareness and National Basketball Association superstar LeBron James’s funding of college scholarships for inner-city youth. Professional athletes’ willingness to take public stands on political and social issues is reflected and reinforced by sports entities’ social responsibility initiatives. For example, the NCAA relocated men’s basketball championship games out of North Carolina in response to a state law that curbed anti-discrimination protections for transgender people. Most sports leagues and governing bodies regularly participate in socially responsible causes.</p> Arthur R. Miller, Jodi S. Balsam ##submission.copyrightStatement## Wed, 08 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0400 Inspiring and Empowering Women: The WNBA Leading the Way into the 21st Century Lisa Borders ##submission.copyrightStatement## Wed, 08 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0400 Social Responsibility in Sports: Current Landscape <p>While most industries are being held increasingly responsible for engaging in socially responsible business practices and contributing to public interest efforts, professional sports are likely held to an even higher standard of what is traditionally considered corporate social responsibility (CSR). Professional sports are intricately embedded in their communities, arguably more dependent on consumer and government support, with greater influence on culture and more power to improve community well-being. These facts lead to the expectation that professional sports will contribute more to society than just exciting exhibitions. As this expectation is relatively new, the parameters of social responsibility in sports (SRS) is not well defined. Most professional leagues and teams in the United States are participating in efforts to improve their communities, the well-being of their employees, and promote safety and integrity within their competitions. But neither the motivations behind these efforts nor the outcomes have been well characterized. This examination draws on original research to describe how SRS differs from typical CSR. It will then identify some key legal mechanisms through which socially responsible efforts in sports are carried out, and the importance of a leadership culture that embraces SRS. Finally, it will explain the value of authentic social responsibility efforts, both to the community and to the implementing sport organization, which calls for investments in SRS initiatives that are strategically tailored to the organization’s identity and are held accountable for meeting the needs of the community.</p> Brendan Parent ##submission.copyrightStatement## Wed, 08 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0400 Social Responsibility in Sports: A Call for a Systematic Approach <p>There appears to be a general understanding among stakeholders in the sports industry that its organizations have a distinct responsibility to engage in socially responsible behavior and works. This has resulted in a plethora of types of activities undertaken as part of this social responsibility of sports (SRS). However, efforts to measure and systematize SRS activities to gauge effectiveness and impact have proven to be a challenge. Much as with corporate social responsibility efforts in other industries, the sheer breadth and diversity of motives and modes of engagement for SRS activities often obfuscate goals and metrics for success. This paper outlines such challenges and provides a framework for engaging in SRS in a manner that advances both organizational and societal goals. It also argues that the desire to “do good” among sports organizations must be complemented by a systematic approach and consistent program evaluation using mixed methodological methods to maximize the impact of SRS dollars. Should the sports industry be able to agree and commit to such an approach, it can serve as an example for responsible and effective social engagement to other industries.</p> Jason Chung ##submission.copyrightStatement## Wed, 08 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0400 Overuse Injuries in Youth Sports: Legal and Social Responsibility <p>Youth sports-related injuries represent a major public health challenge, and overuse injuries, which result from repetitive microtrauma and insufficient rest, are a particular and growing concern. Overuse injuries are increasingly prevalent within youth sports, can lead to lifelong disabilities, and are almost entirely preventable. We explore the question of whether parents, who have been shown to significantly influence their children’s sports experiences and behaviors, can be held responsible for overuse injuries. We also discuss the role of other actors, including medical practitioners and coaches, and the duties that they may have to prevent such injuries to child athletes. We argue that, in many cases, contributions to overuse injuries are the result of non-culpable ignorance, and that a better way to help prevent overuse injuries may be to enact policies that educate parents, as well as schools, coaches, and organizations, about overuse injuries.</p> Phoebe Friesen, Bethany Saul, Lisa Kearns, Kathleen Bachynski, Arthur Caplan ##submission.copyrightStatement## Wed, 08 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0400 ‘Celebrate Humanity’: Reconciling Sport and Human Rights Through Athlete Activism <p>Global sport—which encompasses the Olympic Movement—proclaims powerful and universal ideals, including human rights. At the same time, it seeks to govern itself in a special way through a values system committed to the neutrality, autonomy, and specificity of sport. Through a combination of power in the sports market and the twin legal forces of specific enabling legislation and compulsory arbitration, global sport has established a dominant position in its dealings with its major stakeholders. The people who make sport possible—the athletes and those affected by the magnitude of modern sporting events, including local communities, workers, children, journalists, and fans—have all suffered harm. These forces have given rise to three levels of athlete activism: (1) individual activism; (2) collective activism; and, more recently, (3) institutional activism. That activism is guided by its own values system grounded in a deep respect for human rights as well as sport and the dignity of pursuing sport for a living. Its objective is to culturally and legally reconcile sport and human rights. The challenge for global sport is to embrace the opportunity presented by athlete activism and ensure that sport is a genuine force for good.</p> Brendan Schwab ##submission.copyrightStatement## Wed, 08 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0400 Sports and Humanitarian Development: A Look at Sports Programming in the Refugee Crisis Through a Case Study of KickStart Joy Soccer Project at the Zaatari Refugee Camp <p>The international development community is increasingly looking toward sports programs to play a role in the development of marginalized populations in both disaster and developing contexts. All aspects of the aid community, including governments, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and civil society, increasingly look toward the growing body of international treatises as a framework to maximize the role that sports programming can play in the lives of marginalized youth. This case study of a soccer program in Zaatari Refugee Camp highlights how the different parts of this movement come together, particularly the international treatises, legal regulations, and public/private partnerships.</p> Elizabeth Cheung-Gaffney ##submission.copyrightStatement## Wed, 08 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0400 The Suspensions Are Killing Me: Why the NFL’s Approach to Off-Field Conduct Needs Rehab <p>As consumers have begun to increasingly scrutinize corporate behavior in recent decades, U.S. professional sports leagues have faced acute pressure to engage in socially responsible actions to protect their reputations and maximize profitability. This has encompassed the need to properly respond to athlete off-field conduct, especially instances of domestic and sexual violence and substance abuse. However, leagues and teams have faced widespread criticism for failing to fairly and consistently address such misconduct to date, and for being more interested in public relations (PR) than in addressing underlying social problems. This article posits that rather than continue with the current retributive model centered on suspensions and fines, leagues (with a spotlight on the NFL) should instead prioritize policies that substantively address domestic violence and drug abuse. This would better serve athlete-employees, society, and the leagues’ own bottom lines.</p> Amanda Zink ##submission.copyrightStatement## Wed, 08 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0400