Team Canada will not send athletes to Games in summer 2020 due to COVID-19 risks

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The message below from the COC and CPC follows a call this afternoon amongst the majority of NSOs. Taekwondo Canada fully supports the position in the notice. 


In summary, having athletes train during this period puts athletes, coaches and their communities at increased risks. For this reason, Canada will not be sending teams to the Olympics or Paralympics in the summer of 2020. 


We would like to take this opportunity to extend our appreciation for all of you who, as a courtesy, have taken the proactive step of closing your schools to in-person training. We understand that these have been difficult decisions during these difficult times. For many of you, we also realize your clubs are a major or sole source of your income. Please know that Taekwondo Canada staff and board members will be here to help in any way that we can. 


It has not gone unnoticed how many of you are providing instruction and access to Taekwondo via online training. This goes to show the commitment, resilience and indomitable spirit of our Taekwondo community and your dedication to your students. 


For the same reasons the Canadian sport communities concurred with the COC/CPC announcement, Taekwondo Canada has decided to cancel the July national event and, at this time, Taekwondo Canada is not planning to fielda team for the Junior World Championships.


These are challenging times for everybody and we have full confidence that the Taekwondo community will work together and come out of this stronger than before. 


Team Canada will not send athletes to Games in summer 2020 due to COVID-19 risks

TORONTO/OTTAWA (March 22, 2020) – The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and Canadian Paralympic Committee (CPC), backed by their Athletes’ Commissions, National Sports Organizations and the Government of Canada, have made the difficult decision to not send Canadian teams to the Olympic and Paralympic Games in the summer of 2020.  

The COC and CPC urgently call on the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to postpone the Games for one year and we offer them our full support in helping navigate all the complexities that rescheduling the Games will bring. While we recognize the inherent complexities around a postponement, nothing is more important than the health and safety of our athletes and the world community. 

This is not solely about athlete health – it is about public health. With COVID-19 and the associated risks, it is not safe for our athletes, and the health and safety of their families and the broader Canadian community for athletes to continue training towards these Games. In fact, it runs counter to the public health advice which we urge all Canadians to follow.

The COC and CPC reviewed the letter and news release sent Sunday by the IOC. We are thankful to the IOC for its assurance that it will not be cancelling the Tokyo 2020 Games and appreciative that it understands the importance of accelerating its decision-making regarding a possible postponement.

We also applaud the IOC for acknowledging that safeguarding the health and wellness of nations  and containing the virus must be our paramount concern. We are in the midst of a global health crisis that is far more significant than sport.

The COC and CPC would like to thank our athletes, partners and the Canadian sport community for their patience and for lending us their voices during these unprecedented times. We remain hopeful that the IOC and IPC will agree with the decision to postpone the Games as a part of our collective responsibility to protect our communities and work to contain the spread of the virus.



Josh Su, Specialist, Public Relations
Canadian Olympic Committee
C: 647-464-4060

Photi Sotiropoulos, Director, Communications and Media Relations
Canadian Olympic Committee
C: 416-476-9174

Nicole Watts, Manager, Public Relations
Canadian Paralympic Committee
C: 613-462-2700

Martin Richard, Executive Director, Communications and Brand
Canadian Paralympic Committee
C: 613-725-4339


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