Recently, the United States Equestrian Federation implemented a new policy requiring media seeking credentials to a USEF owned property (i.e. national championship) to complete a criminal background check in accordance with the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee’s Background Check Policy’s best practices. The cost of the background check will be borne by the individual seeking accreditation.
The USEF states that a criminal background check is necessary due to the potential of unsupervised one-on-one interactions with athletes.
The Board of the IAEJ issued the following statement in response to the USEF Background Check Policy.
The IAEJ is opposed on principle to the new USEF requirement regarding criminal background checks for media as we object to any unfair conditions of accreditation. Media should never have to pay a fee to attend any event they are covering legitimately. Additionally, the onus should be on the USEF to adhere to a strict accreditation process, which if followed properly, is a background check in and of itself.