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George Morris on the SS list

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    Originally posted by Horsegirl's Mom View Post

    Why yes, thank you for offering!

    As a preliminary question, are you affiliated with SafeSport? Can we take your answers to these questions as authoritative statements on how SafeSport works?

    Here are my questions:

    1. When does the accused see the evidence, including witness statements, that will be used against him?

    2. Does the initial investigation or the arbitration proceeding allow for any discovery? [The rules clearly state no, but perhaps you will tell us otherwise.] If not, why not?

    3. Does the initial investigation or the arbitration proceeding allow the accused's attorney to cross-examine any witnesses?

    4. Does the arbitrator have any power to compel witnesses to come and testify (i.e., like a subpoena)? If not, how can the accused get a reluctant witness to testify as to the facts they know--like if the witness says they "don't want to get involved"?

    5. How many SafeSport sanctions have gone to arbitration, and how many of those have been upheld?
    Hello Horsegirl's Mom - my apologies for the late message! I had written a super-long response that I accidentally deleted and I finally found a bit of free time to re-write a response. I give an in-depth synopsis of my background and connection to SafeSport on post #1412 in Rob Gage's forum.

    I have forwarded each of your questions to a SafeSport media representative that I have worked with in the past. I will post those answers when they become available. I hope you don't mind if I try to answer your questions now, to the best of my ability.

    1. Honestly, this depends. If the responding party cooperates with the Center's investigation, they are regularly updated about the evidence against them. If they do not cooperate, they are left out of the loop. I provide a few examples in the Rob Gage thread. In other words, if the responding party is cooperative (i.e. comply with the terms of any temporary measures, provide appropriate documents, does not harass witnesses/claimants, etc.), they are told/shown the evidence against them and given the opportunity to provide their own evidence in response.

    2. There is no discovery. In my personal opinion, this is due to logistical and financial reasons. Paying an attorney to go through all of the available documents & selecting them for disclosure, discovery deposition, and resolving discovery disputes can be a very time-consuming and expensive procedure.

    3. The witnesses can be cross-examined if they agree to be cross-examined. I have worked on several cases in which the witnesses were cross-examined by the responding party's attorney. I am also aware of a few cases in which the witnesses refused to be cross-examined.

    "The Claimant shall be subject to questioning by only the arbitrator unless the Claimant agrees to direct examination and cross-examination by the opposing party." -SafeSport Code

    4. No, they do not have the ability to compel witnesses to testify. IMO this is due to logistical, financial and ethical reasons. The Center is not interested in punishing witnesses, especially survivors of abuse, for not testifying.

    5. I will wait for an official response from the Center before posting an exact number. If I do not get a response in a reasonable amount of time, I can calculate it myself (I've been keeping a running list since early 2018 - but I'm not sure if it's fully inclusive. I asked for the following numbers:

    # of SafeSport sanctions that have been overturned through arbitration
    # of SafeSport cases that are currently in arbitration
    # of SafeSport cases that have gone to arbitration
    Breakdown of those that were under "criminal disposition" vs. non-CD

    My apologies for the late responses, YankeeDuchess. Would you mind putting all of your most recent questions in a list? I keep getting behind on the forum and I want to make sure I'm able to either answer all of your questions or forward them to the Center ASAP.

    Comment


      Originally posted by Virginia Horse Mom View Post
      On a somewhat unrelated but interesting note regarding much of the last several PAGES and PAGES of this thread... just finished watching “The Tale” on HBO.

      Coincidentally, I have some ties to the area the author was from, and some of the background sporting communities related to this story.

      Anyone else watch it yet? I don’t know that I will recommend it as it is INCREDIBLY triggering. I don’t quite know how I feel about the movie at this time.

      Regardless... it’s sort of bizarre how close some of the real life stuff behind this movie is to George Morris. The former Olympian “running” coach in the movie won a Gold at the 1960 Olympics... George Morris won Silver there. The movie theoretically happened at a “Carolina” horse farm. But the real life Jennifer Fox was from Narberth, PA. With a bit of piecing together different parts of the story... it’s possible to make a very good guess as to who the real life Bill Allen and Mrs. G are. Both are in their eighties now...

      I cross referenced the Safe Sport list to see if the person it seems like the Bill Allen character was based upon is on it (he was an Olympic athlete and has been a major coach in his sport for decades). The guy isn’t on the list. It’s sort of odd... if the story from the movie is true... there are very very very likely more victims out there. I hope Safe Sport is investigating the person the movie seems to point to.

      And it makes you wonder about the real life Mrs. G as well. It’s sad and really disturbing to think about. But the events in the movie are horrific.
      I watched it when it came out and it is an incredible depiction of grooming through a child's and adult's eyes. I was especially jolted by the part (spoiler alert until the end of this paragraph) where the adult Jennifer remembers herself as a cocky older mature teen, then sees a picture of what she really looked like when it started, and the actress playing her as a child changes entirely.

      But I'm from the other coast, so I don't know who the people you mention could be. PM me?

      Comment


        FiSk123 Thanks for getting the numbers! In your experience, when do you think we will know the results of GHM’s appeal? Best guess I mean.

        Comment


          Hey, thanks Keep it Simple and Fisk for the real information being provided here. It feels like a lot of questions are being answered, and I appreciate the efforts to get even more info. In my mind, it helps SafeSport's mission to be as transparent as possible about how the process works and the results being obtained.

          I think a lot of these questions have been spurred by the information put out by Bonnie Nevin (?) and others who may be allied with her. When she stated there was a 90% overturn rate, that is certainly a statistic that makes one sit up and pay attention. As a trial lawyer myself, I'm used to the idea that we always want to preserve our credibility, since getting good results from the judge depends on it. It was hard for me to conclude that Ms. Nevin was just totally making stuff up. But sad to say, maybe that's the case.

          Comment


            Originally posted by Bold MooMoo View Post
            Who is this FISK that you keep calling upon to back up your facts? Do you know them in real life or just who they say they are here. I would like to hear from them again, about 75 pages later.
            It’s FiSk123, who has a figure skating background and seems to know an awful lot about SafeSport. She pops up now and again with knowledge of the procedures and statistics based on the SafeSport database.

            I don’t know who she is, perhaps a journalist, but purely based on her posts I assign a huge amount of credibility to her, and am always interested in her input.

            Comment


              Originally posted by Horsegirl's Mom View Post
              Hey, thanks Keep it Simple and Fisk for the real information being provided here. It feels like a lot of questions are being answered, and I appreciate the efforts to get even more info. In my mind, it helps SafeSport's mission to be as transparent as possible about how the process works and the results being obtained.

              I think a lot of these questions have been spurred by the information put out by Bonnie Nevin (?) and others who may be allied with her. When she stated there was a 90% overturn rate, that is certainly a statistic that makes one sit up and pay attention. As a trial lawyer myself, I'm used to the idea that we always want to preserve our credibility, since getting good results from the judge depends on it. It was hard for me to conclude that Ms. Nevin was just totally making stuff up. But sad to say, maybe that's the case.
              I’m glad to read your coming around. Not sure why you would take statistics and statements as fact without research though. I think the push back you’ve seen on these threads is because many here don’t believe the rantings of Nevin. It’s not maybe the case, it is the case. Why do you put so much stock in what she says? Because she’s a lawyer? Peruse your state bar ethics committee decisions to see why that maybe a bad idea.

              Comment


                Originally posted by YankeeDuchess View Post

                It’s FiSk123, who has a figure skating background and seems to know an awful lot about SafeSport. She pops up now and again with knowledge of the procedures and statistics based on the SafeSport database.

                I don’t know who she is, perhaps a journalist, but purely based on her posts I assign a huge amount of credibility to her, and am always interested in her input.
                If you have followed along you would know they are a journalist with figure skating ties. No gender has been mentioned.

                Comment


                  Originally posted by Keep it Simple View Post

                  It is from personal experience.
                  I guess I am in a small club that have had the privilege of experiencing it first hand.
                  Thanks for your response. Sorry you had to go through it all.

                  Comment


                    Originally posted by YankeeDuchess View Post

                    My post was asking whether court enforced subpoenas of non-parties to a dispute would technically be available in the JAMS arbitration part, if the law authorizing SafeSport were suitably changed. My reading of the excerpt of the FAA act provided by BITSA indicated that court enforced subpoena power would be available to JAMS.

                    It was an honest question.

                    Perhaps someone else will answer it.
                    My take is that it would be enforceable based on what the arbitration agreement says and if it specifies what rules are to be followed. I just got off the phone for a scheduling setting conference with a JAMS judge, and he consistently referred back to the arbitration agreement the employee signed for procedural constraints and rules to be followed through the discovery process. Not that that is the be all end all, but as a matter of contract, it makes sense to me.

                    I used that section of the FAA because the complainant is not a party to the SafeSport case (much like the victim in a criminal case isn't the party).

                    Comment


                      Originally posted by Denali6298 View Post

                      I’m glad to read your coming around. Not sure why you would take statistics and statements as fact without research though. I think the push back you’ve seen on these threads is because many here don’t believe the rantings of Nevin.
                      Well, that's why I've been asking for information, and it appears we are finally about to get some! The kind of statistics we want are not in the public domain.

                      You seem to think everyone should just take at face value SafeSport's cheery marketing about what a great job they're doing. I tend to wear my "skeptical" hat most of the time (occupational hazard), and it's funny the stuff you find out when you ask persistent questions.

                      The 45 day thing is a perfect example. You took it as gospel and chided me for not just accepting SafeSport's stated timeframe. Well, now it looks like that timeframe is more fantasy than reality, doesn't it? (Not saying that's SS's fault; it's just a fact).


                      Comment


                        Originally posted by Horsegirl's Mom View Post

                        Well, that's why I've been asking for information, and it appears we are finally about to get some! The kind of statistics we want are not in the public domain.

                        You seem to think everyone should just take at face value SafeSport's cheery marketing about what a great job they're doing. I tend to wear my "skeptical" hat most of the time (occupational hazard), and it's funny the stuff you find out when you ask persistent questions.

                        The 45 day thing is a perfect example. You took it as gospel and chided me for not just accepting SafeSport's stated timeframe. Well, now it looks like that timeframe is more fantasy than reality, doesn't it? (Not saying that's SS's fault; it's just a fact).

                        I incorrectly assumed that you as a trial lawyer realize continuances are a thing. You asked what is the time frame, SS lays out 45 days but like any process involving lawyers it can go longer.

                        I don’t look at SS cheery marketing and base my decision. I look at the actual rules and have emailed them and the coordinator for USEF with my questions. I also have been aware of this problem in our sport for a very long time. Unfortunately it has never been my story to tell.

                        I also recognize the likes of Nevin for who she is. I also bounce my thoughts off people I’m friends with IRL who practice appellate law and often take pro bono cases for people who couldn’t otherwise afford an attorney and are languishing in jail.

                        I will take responsibility for making the assumption that people dig as much as I do.

                        I think our efforts would be better spent tightening up the time frame rules for trainers who “are only available on Mondays” as keep it simple pointed out. They ask for the appeal and then say “oh it’s not a Monday.” GTFO with that.

                        Comment


                          Originally posted by BITSA View Post

                          My take is that it would be enforceable based on what the arbitration agreement says and if it specifies what rules are to be followed. I just got off the phone for a scheduling setting conference with a JAMS judge, and he consistently referred back to the arbitration agreement the employee signed for procedural constraints and rules to be followed through the discovery process. Not that that is the be all end all, but as a matter of contract, it makes sense to me.

                          I used that section of the FAA because the complainant is not a party to the SafeSport case (much like the victim in a criminal case isn't the party).


                          Thank you! I wasn’t inclined to get a law degree to figure this out for myself, or spend hours googling to present myself as a faux lawyer.

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by Keep it Simple View Post
                            Did anyone listen to this podcast with Molly Bailey?

                            https://www.chronofhorse.com/article...r-jenny-susser

                            She states George Morris was put on the list "Thanks to allegations of misconduct with a minor" was an interesting one. I would have expect her to say "because" not 'thanks". In my opinion, using the word "thanks" give it a sarcastic tone.
                            Greenie here. Am I the only one who noticed in the COTH podcast (19:10) that Packy is objecting to Safesport banning people who are registered sex offenders without a hearing. Because people get on the registered sex offenders list for a variety of reasons? Perhaps that deserved some probing from COTH, such as 'what reasons do you get on the registered sex offender's list that should require Safe Sport to investigate a decision made by the criminal justice system".

                            Comment


                              Originally posted by Headsup123 View Post

                              Greenie here. Am I the only one who noticed in the COTH podcast (19:10) that Packy is objecting to Safesport banning people who are registered sex offenders without a hearing. Because people get on the registered sex offenders list for a variety of reasons? Perhaps that deserved some probing from COTH, such as 'what reasons do you get on the registered sex offender's list that should require Safe Sport to investigate a decision made by the criminal justice system".
                              It appears they are buying into Jim Gorgio’s BS about he served his time blah blah blah.

                              Comment


                                But aren't the ISWG people saying it should be turned over to the criminal justice system? And yet when the criminal justice system renders a verdict they are saying Safe Sport should second guess? I am confused.

                                Comment


                                  Originally posted by Headsup123 View Post
                                  But aren't the ISWG people saying it should be turned over to the criminal justice system? And yet when the criminal justice system renders a verdict they are saying Safe Sport should second guess? I am confused.
                                  They want SS to go away. They don’t want to fix it, they want it gone. Bonnie Nevin actually gives credence to Jim Gorgio. They have aligned themselves with child molesters.

                                  And for some reason actually hold weight with people.

                                  Comment


                                    Originally posted by Headsup123 View Post

                                    Greenie here. Am I the only one who noticed in the COTH podcast (19:10) that Packy is objecting to Safesport banning people who are registered sex offenders without a hearing. Because people get on the registered sex offenders list for a variety of reasons? Perhaps that deserved some probing from COTH, such as 'what reasons do you get on the registered sex offender's list that should require Safe Sport to investigate a decision made by the criminal justice system".
                                    I think I can provide an example of what he might have been talking about. When my daughter was in kindergarten, everyone on our street one day got a notice in the mail that a registered sex offender lived on our street. There were no details; we were just told a sex offender lived in our midst. The street was comprised of lots of families with kids, so naturally we were all very concerned. The neighbor sent out his own notice inviting everyone on the street to an open house where we could meet him and ask any questions we might have. It turned out he was a psychiatrist who had gotten into a consensual relationship with an adult female patient. From what I remember, the relationship went south, she reported him to whatever officials she found, and he ended up on the sex offender list for a short period of time. So he presented absolutely no danger to anyone in our neighborhood; he was just a man who made a poor decision regarding a relationship that would not have been a problem if he had not been her psychiatrist. We really appreciated his reaching out to the community in the way that he did.

                                    This is also an example of the fact that sex offenders are not automatically required to be on the "list" for their entire lives as soon as they are found guilty. I think that is determined by the judge as part of the sentencing at the end of the trial.

                                    Comment


                                      Great example. Correct me if I am mistaken but from everything I have read on this thread and the Rob Gage thread almost every single person who has been banned by Safe Sport based on registered sex offender status involved sexual misconduct with a minor

                                      Comment


                                        Originally posted by Denali6298 View Post

                                        I incorrectly assumed that you as a trial lawyer realize continuances are a thing. You asked what is the time frame, SS lays out 45 days but like any process involving lawyers it can go longer.

                                        I don’t look at SS cheery marketing and base my decision. I look at the actual rules and have emailed them and the coordinator for USEF with my questions. I also have been aware of this problem in our sport for a very long time. Unfortunately it has never been my story to tell.

                                        I also recognize the likes of Nevin for who she is. I also bounce my thoughts off people I’m friends with IRL who practice appellate law and often take pro bono cases for people who couldn’t otherwise afford an attorney and are languishing in jail.

                                        I will take responsibility for making the assumption that people dig as much as I do.

                                        I think our efforts would be better spent tightening up the time frame rules for trainers who “are only available on Mondays” as keep it simple pointed out. They ask for the appeal and then say “oh it’s not a Monday.” GTFO with that.
                                        Her name is Bonnie Navin. Her Facebook page probably still has the statement that over 90% of SafeSport bans have been overturned on appeal.

                                        Comment


                                          Originally posted by YankeeDuchess View Post

                                          Her name is Bonnie Navin. Her Facebook page probably still has the statement that over 90% of SafeSport bans have been overturned on appeal.
                                          I know who she is. My apologies for the typo. Don’t care enough to correct it.

                                          Comment

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