Annual Report 2017/2018

The Combat Sports Commission Annual Report 2017/2018 reports and financial statements, including the year's highlights, Chairman's report, Commissioner profiles, issues and trends and financial reporting.

Chairman’s report

The 2017/18 financial year was a productive yet challenging year for the Commission with several new initiatives being implemented and several changes to the composition of the Commission.

Changes to the Commission and staff

This year saw a number of changes to the composition of the Commission. Dr Roslyn Carbon departed after five years with the Commission and Mr Nick Sloan stepped down after 14 months with the Commission. I thank Roslyn and Nick for all their hard work and effort during that time. Dr Brian Galton-Fenzi was appointed to the Commission as the new Medical Commissioner and Ms Jacqui Jasahri was appointed as the new departmental representative. Both Brian and Jacqui bring a wealth of experience to their roles and I look forward to the continuation of our work together.

I wish to also acknowledge the outgoing Executive Officer, Mr Greg McGuire. Greg supported the Commission for more than eight years for which I am very appreciative and wish Greg all the best with his future endeavours. The Executive Officer position was also occupied by Cameron Agnew for a period of four months while Greg was on leave and Seema Saxena has filled the vacancy caused by Greg’s departure. I appreciate the efforts of both Cameron and Seema throughout the year in working with the Commission during some challenging times.

Staff relocation

The Commission’s administration team has now relocated to Gordon Stephenson House, 140 William Street, Perth (situated directly above the Perth Underground Train Station). This move was part of changes occurring through the Machinery of Government, announced by the Premier on 28 April 2017. As a part of the Machinery of Government, the former Department of Sport and Recreation now sits within the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries (DLGSC). The move was a massive challenge and I thank all those involved.

Contestant safety project

In 2017/18, the Commission established the Contestant Safety Reference Group to address rapid weight loss by dehydration (weight cutting) by contestants. The Reference Group has developed a strategy to address weight cutting through extensive research and industry consultation. The Commission also engaged Curtin University to conduct research into the validity, availability and practicality of dehydration testing. The Commission aims to roll out the strategy in the 2018/19 financial year. The Commission appointed James Harmer as the Project Officer to work with the Refence Group on this project. I thank James for all his hard work on this important project.

Communications project

The Commission engaged Two Moons Consulting to review and advise on matters relating to communications including publication materials, website design, stakeholder engagement and the delivery of education and training. This project has highlighted areas in which the Commission can achieve better engagement with the industry and will continue to work with Two Moons in 2018/19 to deliver an improved level of service and regulation.

Other projects

In parallel to the abovementioned projects, the Commission has been developing a new online registration portal and building our new stand-alone website supported with our own domain name. Currently the Commission web pages are located within the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries’ website. We appreciate the challenges users find in gathering relevant information quickly and easily in the current format.

Policy work

The Commission undertook a significant amount of policy work during 2017/18, commencing the review of all its policies to guide Commission decision making and provide greater clarity to the industry. The Commission will continue this work in 2018/19.

Acknowledgements

I also wish to acknowledge the contribution of all members of the Commission. I thank them for their dedication and personal assistance that they have provided me. I acknowledge Commissioners Derrick Chan, Dean Woodhams, Renée Felton and Wayne Rowland who attended most contests in 2017/18.
I wish to publicly acknowledge the continued efforts of Tracey Roper, Stacey Newton and Lisa Pearson throughout the year. It is their commitment and professionalism that ensures the smooth running of the Commission.

On behalf of the Commission, I would like to again thank the Hon. Mick Murray for his support of the Commission and would also like to personally commend all Commission members and support staff for their efforts in enforcing the Act during the year.

Cassandra Wright
Commission Chair