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We understand that the Canadian DanceSport Federation (CDF) circulated a letter to its members on August 15, 2014.  This same letter was also posted on the National Dance Council of Canada (NDCC) website on August 18, 2014.   It is unfortunate that CDF did not apprise us of their action prior to distribution of the letter as it contains statements that are exaggerated and untrue. This could result in misleading their membership into believing that Canada DanceSport (CDS) is trying to take over CDF's business in Canada.
The CDF letter is self-explanatory and as you can see, it listed quite a few restrictions which CDF has imposed on its members. It is our belief that the CDF membership were not presented with these new rules for discussion or voting prior to their implementation. Canada is a democratic society and members should be given the right to vote on matters which affect them and in particular their livelihood. The restrictions limit the ability of CDF members to participate in Canadian events in Pro-Am, judging or joining other professional organizations in Canada not sanctioned by or affiliated with CDF.  Any such participation by a CDF member would result in his/her facing suspension or future career jeopardy. 
What is very interesting is that in 2006, Canadian Dance and DanceSport Council (CDDSC) did exactly the same thing, and that was the reason why CDF was formed and they at that time sought our support and we readily gave it to them. It is apparent that just 8 short years after an Agreement was signed between CDF and CDS (formerly known as CADA) and their original Press Release (copy attached) in which they berated CDDSC for their actions, CDF is now engaging in the exact same actions which CDDSC committed back in 2006. 

Points of clarification regarding the CDF letter:
1.       “...the actions taken over the last year by the Canadian WDSF member, CDS, and their Provincial Amateur affiliates, have increasingly encroached on professional dance business.”
          Canada DanceSport has done everything the same as in the past years and in no way did we encroach on professional dance business. We however no longer apply to CDF for sanctioning since CDF has joined the World Dance Council (WDC) and is no longer affiliated with the World DanceSport Federation (WDSF) which we are a member of.
2.       “taking back our business....by setting up an amateur registry for those amateurs who wished to compete but did not want to belong to the WDSF directed amateur associations.”
          CDS has been registering amateur athletes in Canada for 58 years. We have always been a WDSF member and there was a general acceptance by coaches, dancers, athletes and teachers that CDS is the sole amateur authority in Canada. 
Extracted below is a paragraph from the CDF signed Agreement with us in April 2006
"THAT CDF (Canadian DanceSport Federation) and its members shall recognize CADA as the national Amateur Governing Body in Canada and that CADA and its Regional Associations shall have the sole authority in the registration of amateur DanceSport competitors in Canada."
Their establishment of an amateur registry has clearly violated the terms of the Agreement.  In addition, we cannot see what they are referring to in their statement of "taking back our business" as it is plainly stated in their April 2006 Agreement with us that CDS is the national Amateur Governing Body in Canada.

 3.       “....accept amateur cards belonging to any association.....amateur associations did not allow this at their own events, which is their right, but also refused to allow it at professionally organized events, thereby encroaching on the rights of the professional organizer.”
          CDS does not have jurisdiction over events organized by professionals who do not seek sanctioning from CDS, its Regional Association or WDSF and therefore, the professional organizers can accept any type of amateur cards as they wish at these Non-CDS, -WDSF and -Regional sanctioned events.  CDS does not have the authority to refuse or accept amateur cards at these non-sanctioned events.  The sole authority lies with the professional organizers. However, if an event is sanctioned by CDS or any of its Regional Associations, then an organizer, professional or otherwise, must abide by the rules of our sanction which would mean the organizer can only accept amateur cards recognized by CDS and its Regional Associations. This is rather different than the statement made in their letter. 
4.      “The WDSF sent out a directive that any amateur couple competing in an event not sanctioned by them or their member, would not be allowed to compete in WDSF events for a year. For those not understanding, this would include all professionally run competitions including Blackpool. They then backtracked and said that « it was up to each member country » to enforce this rule or not.  It is our belief that the Canadian WDSF member is enforcing this rule”. 
          CDF has every right to believe in whatever they choose. However, we wish to point out that the statement in the last sentence is simply not true.
          At the WDSF AGM in June, 2014, it was the WDSF National Member bodies from countries like Canada, USA, Germany, Denmark, Australia, New Zealand, England and many others who insisted on adding the following statement At the discretion of the WDSF National Member Body”.   As such, the so-called backtracking never existed as the added statement was voted on and approved at the AGM.
          CDS fought for the Canadian dancers' rights to compete in any event of their choosing in 2012 and again in 2014 and won.  The result was that the option to allow dancers to compete in any event is left up to the WDSF Member Country and in Canada, it is CDS.  A news release was sent out to all members immediately following the 2014 WDSF AGM confirming that all Canadian dancers have the freedom to compete in any event of their choosing. 
5.      “Some Provincial amateur associations have also started to include Pro-Am events in competitions to fund their competitions and they usually undercut the entry fees of professional organizers, taking away the business of professionals”
          Pro-Am events organized by amateurs are not new.  Amateur organizers have been running Pro-Am events even long before CDF was formed 8 years ago.  We live in a world of free market.  Each organizer has the right to charge as much or as little in ticket pricing, entry fees or otherwise, it should not be regarded as undercutting.  If amateur organizers do charge less, that might be an indication that those organizers are more efficient in their money management.
          Pro-Am couples welcome the opportunity of competing in their home region as some students do not wish to travel. The effect of which would mean income for the professionals as students would take more lessons in preparation for the Pro-Am events. In addition, professionals do charge their students when they compete with them at Pro-Am events. Without these amateur run Pro-Am events, it would probably mean less income for the Professionals. We do not see how running Pro-Am events can be construed as taking business away from Professionals.
6.       “The National Dance Council of America has recently expelled USA Dance....”

          US has a very different system than Canada. USA Dance is the equivalent of CDS in Canada. They had been, for the longest time, a member of NDCA which is the Professional Association in the US. It was not recently but rather in July 2011 that USA Dance was refused membership by NDCA. It was all due to the falling out of NDCA and WDSF, and USA Dance being affiliated with WDSF was unfortunately caught in the crossfire. USA Dance has since then severed all ties with NDCA.
7.       “NDCA have asked CDF for support of their actions under the Agreement of Cooperation between NDCA & CDF”.  
          We are discouraged by CDF’s actions and believe that these restrictions which CDF is placing on its members are counterproductive and reflect regressive policies that are detrimental to DanceSport in Canada.  The restrictions that CDF has created impose sanctions, suspensions and restrictions on their own member’s right to earn a living, carry on their livelihood and the FREEDOM to work where they want to.
          CDS is appealing to all professionals, adjudicators, dancers, athletes, event organizers and promoters in the dance community to tell CDF and NDCC that you are displeased with them imposing restrictions on your ability to compete, adjudicate, work, organize and participate in Canadian dance events.   
          Canada DanceSport Pro Division (CDS PD), on the other hand, is a true democratic organization run by Canadian Professionals. We welcome all Professionals to join CDS PD. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact CDS at president@dancesport.ca.
The Executive Board of Canada DanceSport

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