Russian Government Amends Labor Code To Require Anti-Doping Compliance

Russia has amended its federal labor code, requiring coaches to comply with anti-doping rules.

Russia’s government passed Federal Law 461-FZ in late December, and the law took effect earlier this month. According to the Russian Swimming Federation, the law stipulates that federations write into coaching labor contracts a requirement to “comply with the all-Russian anti-doping rules and anti-doping rules approved by the international anti-doping organizations.”

The law also allows sports federations to terminate contracts of any employees who violate anti-doping rules, either domestically or internationally.

The amendment to the law comes after several years of a high-level doping scandal within the country. The McLaren Reports detailed what they described as a massive, state-sponsored doping operation that included systematic doping and a compromising of Russian anti-doping testing laboratories. The reports suggested that a system was in place to swap out anti-doping samples (typically urine or blood) of top Russian athletes with clean samples to help them pass tests and continue competing. The allegations mostly centered around the year of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, but the reports suggested the systematic doping program continued after Sochi.

The allegations were severe enough that the IOC limited Russia’s participation in the 2016 Rio Olympics (allowing specific athletes to compete only after a process of proving their legitimacy), and the IPC banned all Russian athletes from the 2016 Paralympics. Russia has also been blanket-banned from the 2018 Winter Olympics, though Russian athletes can still compete under the Olympic banner if they prove their innocence.

You can read the Russian Swimming Federation’s announcement of the new law in its original Russian here.

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About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson just can’t stay away from the pool. A competitive career of almost two decades wasn’t enough for this Minnesotan, who continues to get his daily chlorine fix. A lifelong lover of writing, Jared now combines the two passions as Senior Reporter for, covering swimming at every level. He’s an …

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