Riders union asks for social dialogue

With all the controversy and conflict in the sport of cycling in recent times, the voices of the race organisers, the UCI and the antidoping authorities have been forefront in the news, but one voice not heard enough is that of the riders themselves. Several organisations hope to change this disparity, and the CPA (Professional Cyclists International Association) along with the professional teams organisations the IPCT and AIGCP announced Friday that they have jointly requested the European Commission create a special "Committee for European Social Dialogue" for professional cycling.

The European Commission published a document on sport in July which acknowledged the "growing challenges to sport governance," and which specified that a 'Social Dialogue' could be established on a joint request and could help the parties establish commonly agreed upon codes of conduct or charters.

The move comes after the sport's governing body, the UCI, introduced the Rider and Manager's agreements for 'a new cycling', which have drawn protest from teams and riders alike, most notably World Champion Paolo Bettini, who was nearly refused participation in the World Championships over his objection to parts of the document.

The European Commission will review the request for the new committee, which, if approved, could be established as early as November. A statement from the organizations declared, "The CPA, the IPCT and the AIGCP are convinced of the fact that, under the aegis of the European Commission and in a spirit of perfect collaboration with the actors of the sector, the Social Dialogue Committee will prove a major instrument for the revival of professional cycling and the modernization of its governance."

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