This week I am in Vancouver Canada for a Supreme Court case with my teammate Jessica Jerome, former teammate and team director Karla Keck, and other Canadian ski jumpers. We are among 15 plaintiffs that filled a suit last May against VANOC (Vancouver Organizing Committee) to try and get women’s ski jumping to the Olympic program for the games in Vancouver in 2010. The other plaintiffs represent Norway, Germany, Austria, and Sloenija.
Today was day three of a five day hearing. The first two days were given to the plaintiffs to argue. Our lawyers, Ross Clark, and Jeff Horswill, have worked ard on this case over the last year. They spent the time given explaining other court precedence-using past court decisions to prove that VANOC us a “government entity” and thus had to follow the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Clark spent mcuh of the second day showing how VANOC is those government decisions, and should be held to the Canadian Charter. I thought there was an overwhelming amount of evidence that shows VANOC is a government entity. It was very interesting, and intense at times. I was sittting on the edge of my seat at points that nailed VANOC. I felt the first two days went very well in our favor, and our arguments are very strong.
Today the defense had their chance to state their arguments. Lawyers spent much of the day proving that VANOC was not controlled by the B.C. Provincial government, but rather IOC, which has “control” over the organizing committee’s decision making, and they only say what events are added to the Olympic program. He went through many documents that showed VANOC wanted to include the women’s ski jumping, but only if the IOC had added the event to the program. His whole claim is that because VANOC is not a governemnt entity, it is not held to the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
We have two more days left of the hearing, and Thursday s another day for VANOC. Friday is split between the two sides for final arguments. We have a woman judge that seems to be fair-minded, and she will be making her decision sometime in the next few months. It seems like a while for a decison, but she has s many documents to review, so I can understand why she would need the time.
I am confident in our lawyers, and the arguments they have presented. I am eager for this to be over and hear her final decison. Other than sitting in court, we have been doing lots and lots of media. The coverage is great locally and internationally, and the word is being spread. Check out some of the links postef for some more coverage. Thanks for all the support, I hope the judge rules in our favor!!!