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Child Protection Policy
Junior Rugby Football Club
CHILD POTECTION POLICIES
CODE OF BEHAVIOR
All volunteers and members should;
- Be aware of situations that put children at risk, or danger
- Plan work and activities that will minimise risk.
- Be aware of not putting themselves in a situation, open to allegations.
- Create a non-defensive attitude enabling an "Open culture" in which to discuss any issues or concerns.
- Create a culture of mutual accountability so that any potentially abusive behaviour can be challenged.
- Not spend excessive time alone with a child.
- Not take a child into your home.
- Not use bad language, make comments, ridicule, or talk to a child in an offensive, or demeaning way.
- Not behave in a manner that is inappropriate, offensive, or abusive.
- Not act in any way that is intended to be humiliating, belittling or degrading to others.
- Not do things of a personal nature for young people that they can do for themselves
- Never show favouritism to any individuals.
- Not rely on just your own good name to protect you.
- Not jump to conclusions without checking facts
- Report never investigate
The guiding principle is that the protection of the child is always the overriding consideration.
Policy on the secure handling, use, storage and retention of Disclosure Information
In accordance with the Scottish Executive Code of Practice, for registered persons and other recipients of Disclosure Information, the Caithness Junior Rugby Club will ensure the following practice.
- Disclosures will only be requested when necessary and relevant to a particular post and the information provided on a disclosure certificate will only be used for recruitment purposes.
- The Caithness Mini Rugby Club will ensure that an individual's consent is given before using disclosure information for any purpose other than recruitment.
- Disclosure information will only be shared with those authorised to see it in the course of their duties.
- Where additional disclosure information is provided to the Caithness Junior Rugby Club and not to the disclosure applicant, the Caithness Junior Rugby Club will not disclose this information to the applicant, but will inform them of the fact that additional information has been provided, should this information affect the recruitment decision.
- Disclosure information will be stored in a locked non-portable container, for a maximum of 90 days. Only those authorised to see this information in the course of their duties will have access to this container.
- Disclosure information will be destroyed by shredding.
- No image or photocopy of the disclosure information will be made, however, the following details will be retained:-
- Date of issue of disclosure
- Name of subject
- Disclosure type
- Position for which disclosure was requested
- Unique reference number of disclosure
- Recruitment decision taken.
- The Caithness Junior Rugby Club will ensure that all members with access to disclosure information are aware of this policy and have received relevant training and support.
- The Caithness Junior Rugby Club undertake to make a copy of this policy available to any applicant for a post with the Caithness Junior Rugby Club that requires a disclosure.
Caithness Junior Rugby Club recognises that all adults involved in the coaching or supervision of children associated with the Club have a duty to safeguard the welfare of those children. This duty extends to the prevention of physical, sexual or emotional abuse of children associated with the club and shall be applied regardless of a child's gender, race, religion or disability.
Caithness Junior Rugby Club's Child Protection Co-ordinator is Lorna Miller
Caithness Rugby Club Director of Rugby is Colin Sangster
A copy of the Child Protection and Good Practice document is available from either of the above named Club Officials or from the Club Secretary.
The Coach- Athlete Relationship
Coaches- particularly of children- hold a powerful and unique leadership role, often carrying considerable authority and status. A closeness and mutual trust often accompany this role usually only held between parent and child. Coaches often unwittingly or wittingly assume this power and authority and occasionally this influence spills over into a child's personal life. One of the challenges coaches repeatedly face is how to manage this potential power and balance the responsibility and safe boundary between coach and performer. The challenge to do this is exacerbated by the need for the coaches to build high levels of trust from children- particularly those involved in elite performance- to encourage them to change their behaviour to develop the level of commitment required to achieve their potential.
Coaches of young children start by using their authority role to build a strong relationship or band. Over time this hopefully positive influence can grow to be extremely strong and it is from this influence that trust grows.
Where trust is given, there exists the potential for the abuse and misuse of power by a coach. This may be as a result of thoughtlessness, negligence or occasionally wickedness. Even the passive abuse of power by a coach e.g. by questioning loyalty or commitment, may produce a dangerous level of conformity and emotional dependency in a child.
By seeking conformity and commitment to their own values and ideals, coaches may be exaggerating the need to conform at the price of the child's own personal development, self-determination and independence. All coaches should be able to recognise, the negative consequences of the power they may hold and the trust placed in them, by children and parents.
The Performer- Player relationship
Coaches, Managers, medical personnel, Development Officers and administrators (hereafter "officials") who are associated with representative rugby teams have a powerful leadership role where children and young people are concerned. This can result in a closeness and mutual trust usually only held between parent and child. Such officials may unwittingly or wittingly assume this power and authority and occasionally this influence spills over into a child's personal life. Officials in such positions repeatedly face the challenge of how to maintain a responsible, balanced relationship. This challenge increases as the degree of trust between performer and mentor develops. This occurs with greater intensity at the elite performance level where demands on the performer are greatest.
It is the role of the responsible adult to grow a positive bond of trust with the performer to ensure optimal performance. It is where this trust is being given that the potential for abuse or misuse of power exists. Such abuse maybe the result of thoughtlessness, negligence or occasionally wickedness. Even the passive abuse of power by an official e.g. questioning loyalty of commitment, may produce a dangerous level of conformity and emotional dependency in a child.
The positive bond of trust formed between adult and performer may lead to a relationship where the child may feel able to disclose ant abuse which may be taking place against him/her in the home, at school etc. This is in many ways an indication of the success of the adult in building trust, although it can cause the adult distress and anxiety. The adult should be fully aware of the SRU's guidelines on how to deal with such disclosure or suspicion of abuse and how to review and alter behaviour if the negative consequences become serious or dominate.
By seeking conformity and commitment to their own values and ideas, officials may be exaggerating the need to conform at the price of the child's personal development, self-determination and independence. All officials involved must recognise the negative consequences of the power they may hold and the trust placed in them by children and parents.
Coaches must respect the rights, dignity and worth of every player and treat equally within the context of the sport.
Coaches must place the well being and safety of the performer above the development of performance. They should follow the guidelines laid down by the Scottish Rugby Union.
Coaches must develop an appropriate working relationship with players based on mutual trust and respect. Coaches must not exert any undue influence to gain personal benefit or reward.
Coaches must encourage and guide players to accept responsibility for their own behaviour and performance.
Coaches must ensure the activities they direct or advocate are appropriate for the age, maturity, experience and ability of the individual.
Coaches should, at the outset, clarify with players (and where appropriate their parents) exactly what is expected of them and what players are entitled to expect from those in charge.
Coaches should always advocate the positive aspects of Rugby and never condone rule violations or the use of prohibited substances.
Coaches should co-operate fully with other specialists (e.g. coaches, physiotherapists, club officials etc.) in the best interest of the player
Coaches must respect a player's right to his or her own personal development, independence and self-determination
Coaches must consistently display high standards of behaviour and appearance
Coaches must be prepared to complete Caithness Junior Rugby Club's "Children's Coach Registration Form" and follow the procedures laid down by the club.
Procedure for Coaches
All Coaches shall comply with the Coaches Charter
All Coaches shall complete the club's "Children's Coach Rugby Registration Form".
All new Coaches/Organisers will be made aware of our policy on Child Protection and Good Practice.
Coaches shall follow the guidelines issued on how to deal with the disclosure or suspicion of abuse.
Coaches shall know whom their Child Protection Co-ordinator is.
All activities shall be planned to minimise situations in which abuse may occur.
Officials shall observe the following guidelines to good practice:
- Follow an open door policy in changing rooms and showers
- Prohibit the use of camcorders and cameras in changing rooms and showers. Allow parents access to changing areas when appropriate.
- Do not participate in one to one coaching other than in normal coaching session and always in the presence of other coaches and players.
- Do not allow or engage in inappropriate touching of any form
- Do not make sexually suggestive comments about or to a child, even in fun
- Do not refer to a child's ethnicity, religion, gender, disability, or sexuality in a way that is derogatory.
- Do not allow children to use inappropriate language unchallenged.
- Do not engage in sexually provocative games or horseplay.
- Do not do things of a personal nature for children that they can do for themselves.
- Immediately report incidents of inappropriate language, behaviour or abuse by another Coach.
- Immediately report incidents of inappropriate language, behaviour or abuse by a child.
A "Good Conduct Guide for Spectators and Parents" will be distributed with the fixture list at the start of the season and to new members.
A current membership list or appropriate checklist shall be available at all activities.
An appropriate first responder and first aid kit (coaches shall not attempt to treat injuries unless qualified to do so), are to be on hand at all activities.
An incident book shall always be on hand to record incidents that may have repercussions for the club, coach or player.
Whilst at coaching/ home fixtures and travelling to away fixtures etc. children will be kept under the closest supervision and when appropriate, a "Stay behind" coach will be nominated.
Coaches shall not meet children away from the Rugby Club or meeting place without a parent or other adult being present.
Procedures to be followed by Officials
(where Abuse is disclosed or suspected)©[i].
Create a safe environment
- Stay calm. Do not rush into actions which may be inappropriate.
- Confirm to the child that you know how difficult it must have been to confide in you
- Reassure the child and stress that he/she is not to blame
- Listen to and believe what the child says. Show that you are taking the matter seriously.
- Be honest and Do not make promises you cannot keep. Explain that you may have t tell one other person in order to stop what is happening.
- Be clear about what the child says so that it can be passed on to Child Protection Professionals. Keep questions to minimum. Avoid closed questions (i.e. ones that can be answered by a single word e.g. yes/no). Use open questions to encourage the child to use his/her own words. Do not lead the child, or suggest words or ideas as to what may have happened.
- What the child has said to you, in a legible and accurate format in the Incident Book
- Record only facts and observations, not opinion.
- The child's name, address, date of birth.
- The date and time of the incident
- Exactly what the child said and what you said
- Actions taken and contact with parents/agencies. Remember names, addresses and phone numbers.
- You date and sign the record
- The Club Child Protection Co-Ordinator witnesses the record
- You maintain confidentiality; breaches of confidentiality can be very damaging to the child, family and any Child Protection investigations that take place
- You do not take sole responsibility. Consult with the Child Protection Co-ordinator or another Coach as soon as possible, so that you can begin to protect the child and gain support for yourself in a difficult situation.
- You do not contact parents if you consider the child to be a victim of sexual abuse or at increased risk.