The UFC is good at a lot of things. One of those things is protecting their image. Like any other big company, the UFC wants to avoid a scandal or controversy whenever they can. So how do you avoid situations where a fighters past is brought up and not so flattering details are revealed? Bring in the UFC’s new background checks.
According to MMAJunkie.com, managers of contracted employees (fighters), were sent a copy of the questionnaire. The fighters are asked to give medical history as well as educational and criminal information. Another piece of the document asks fighters to waive their doctor/patient confidentiality. So what does that mean? Well by agreeing to do so, the fighters give the UFC the ability to go straight to healthcare providers when they have any questions about injuries or the health of fighters. The policy will go to new as well as existing fighters in the organization.
The document was sent out with a letter attached from Michael Mersch. Mersch is the UFC’s senior vice president of business and legal affairs as well as assistant general counsel.
Here’s a piece from the letter, again thanks to MMAJunkie.
“Zuffa LLC requires its contracted fighters to act in a legal and responsible manner and avoid conduct detrimental to the integrity of the UFC organization. As the UFC’s highest profile independent contractors and as ambassadors of the sport of mixed martial arts, UFC fighters are held to a high standard by Zuffa, the media and the public.
“It is important for Zuffa to be fully informed of your background in order to evaluate and potentially assist on matter that may be detrimental to the integrity of the UFC organization.”
It seems as though the UFC is trying their hardest to avoid anymore situations like the one with Will Chope. This seems like a step in the right direction and just about all employers issue background checks. The one piece of it that might rub some the wrong way could be the releasing of their medical confidentiality. Will keep you posted of any news comes out of this new policy.