The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) released the first draft of a new Classification Code on Thursday (10 July), marking the launch of the latest round of consultation.
The revised Code, due for release in 2017, was developed from a first period of consultation during 2013 which gathered responses from around the Paralympic Movement on the existing version of the Code.
The current IPC Classification Code was adopted by the IPC Governing Board in 2007 and provides policies and procedures for Paralympic classification that should be common to all sports and to the Paralympic Games.
Over 750 submissions from 32 IPC Members were received as well as recommendations from the IPC Classification Committee and the IPC Management Team based on their dialogue with Members.
The first draft of the 2017 Code was presented to the IPC Governing Board on 21 June 2014 and the IPC are now encouraging feedback from stakeholders by 30 October 2014.
Anne Hart, Chairperson of the IPC Classification Committee said: 'We received a good response to the first round of consultation for the IPC Classification Code and I would like to thank those who took the time to send in their views. We are pleased to now be sharing the first draft of the new Code and inviting further feedback.
'One of the central themes from the responses was to make the Code more accessible and athlete-centred. It is important that everyone has an understanding of classification and that is why we have made several changes to the language used and included explanations where possible.
'A number of other amendments have also been made around when and where classification takes place, the role of the IPC, National Paralympic Committees and International and National Federations as well as other administrative changes.
'Classification remains the lynchpin of fair and equal competition in the Paralympic Movement. I strongly encourage people to once again engage with us during the second round of consultation to continue working towards a better, stronger and more comprehensive code.'
Together with the Code, the IPC also welcomes feedback on the revised International Standards. The International Standards provide the technical and operational requirements for classification across Paralympic sports, and have been amended to reflect changes in the Code.
Following the closing date of the second round of consultation (30 October 2014), a revised draft of the 2017 Code will be submitted to the IPC Governing Board for approval.
A final draft version of the Code will then be published and the IPC will invite feedback for the last time, ahead of a motion at the IPC General Assembly in November 2015 to approve the 2017 Code for use in Paralympic sport.
For the latest updates on the IPC Classification Code Review process and details of how to contribute to the review process, please click here.