Pittsburgh Newspaper Reports Sports Officials Have Criminal Records
September 17, 2008
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette launched a 9-month investigation into the backgrounds of registered Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletics Association (PIAA) referees and can you guess what they found? They discovered “dozens of officials had convictions involving child pornography, molestation charges, drug offenses and assaults, among other offenses.” Surprising? No. Why you ask? Because there are still so many organizations out there that haven’t jumped on the background check band wagon as evidenced by the stories you read on our blog every day. But I’ll tell you what is surprising. The fact that PIAA representatives are quoted as saying they are generally satisfied with the process they have in place – that process being relying on those applying to officiate the sporting events to disclose their past criminal history. Our own Kevin Bachman wrote about background checks in Youth Sports and wasn’t happy with what he saw.
To be honest, I really hope that process works out for them in the end. But the odds of that occurring are slim. Because all it will take will be one incident, one allegation and that process they are so satisfied with will be blown completely out of the water. And what will they have to show for it? A quote on the record stating they were “satisfied” with their current process even though this newspaper proved their so-called process was flawed and a sore backside from kicking themselves for their foolishness.
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