Faculty Author Type

Current Faculty [Marcus Moore]

Published In

The International Sports Law Journal

Document Type


Publication Date



Sports, Law, Concussion, Prevention, Canada


The twenty-first century has revealed the existence of a concussion crisis in sports. The crisis is of global reach, and Canada is no exception. In recent years, the Canadian government joined citizens in recognizing sports concussion as a major public health issue. A parliamentary committee investigated the crisis, reported findings, and made recommendations which the government accepted. As far as legal responses to the sport concussion crisis, new among the recommendations was a callto- action on prevention (Recommendation 13). Since there remains no medical cure for concussions, the government agreed with the view of injured former athletes and injury prevention advocates that prevention is paramount. However, government reports reveal little progress thus far in implementing prevention measures. We confirmed this through an interview, as well as surveys of sports-governing bodies. Our findings show that legal responses continue to focus on previously identified objectives of concussion research, raising awareness, and concussion management—fronts on which substantial progress had already been made over the preceding decade-and-a-half. The article observes that Recommendation 13 calls on government to work with sports bodies on sport-specific prevention measures; however, the government lacks significant experience from its prior work on research, awareness and concussion management protocols with those types of directed collaborative regulatory mechanisms that would most likely be effective for prevention. The article, therefore, examines a range of such mechanisms that the Canadian government could use to make more significant headway on prevention of concussions, as the next phase of its efforts to counter the concussion crisis in sports.





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