Anti-Bullying Policy

The Football Association
Anti-Bullying Policy for
Football Clubs
Recommended Guidelines
What is Bullying?
Bullying is the use of aggression with the intention of
hurting another person. Bullying results in pain and
distress to the victim.
Bullying can be:
•Emotional being unfriendly, excluding (emotionally
and physically), sending hurtful text
messages, tormenting (e.g. hiding football
boots/shin guards, threatening gestures)
•Physical pushing, kicking, hitting, punching or any
use of violence
•Racist racial taunts, graffiti, gestures
•Sexual unwanted physical contact or sexually
abusive comments
•Homophobic because of, or focussing on the issue of
•Verbal name-calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours,
Why is it Important to Respond to Bullying?
Bullying hurts. No one deserves to be a victim of bullying.
Everybody has the right to be treated with respect.
Individuals who are bullying need to learn different ways
of behaving.
This club have a responsibility to respond promptly and
effectively to issues of bullying.
Objectives of this Policy
•All club members, coaches, officials and parents/carers
should have an understanding of what bullying is
•All club members, officials and coaching staff should
know what the club policy is on bullying, and follow it
when bullying is reported
•All players and parents/carers should know what the
club policy is on bullying, and what they should do if
bullying arises
•As a club we take bullying seriously. Players and
parents/carers should be assured that they would be
supported when bullying is reported
•Bullying will not be tolerated
•All club members, coaches, officials and parents/carers
should have an appreciation of the signs and indicators
of bullying.
Statement of Intent
We are committed to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment for all of our members so they can participate
in football in a relaxed and secure atmosphere. Bullying of any kind is unacceptable at our club. If bullying does occur,
all club members or parents should be able to tell and know that incidents will be dealt with promptly and effectively.
We are a TELLING club. This means that anyone who knows that bullying is happening is expected to tell the club
welfare officer or any committee member.
The Football Association
Anti-Bullying Policy for
Football Clubs
Recommended Guidelines
A child may indicate by signs or behaviour that he or she is
being bullied. Adults should be aware of these possible
signs and they should investigate if a child:
•says he or she is being bullied
•is unwilling to go to club sessions
•becomes withdrawn, anxious, or lacking in confidence
•feels ill before training sessions
•comes home with clothes torn or training equipment
•has possessions go ‘missing’
•asks for money or starts stealing money (to pay
the bully)
•has unexplained cuts or bruises
•is frightened to say what's wrong
•gives improbable excuses for any of the above.
Or, in more extreme cases, if a child:
•starts stammering
•cries themselves to sleep at night or has nightmares
•becomes aggressive, disruptive or unreasonable
•is bullying other children or siblings
•stops eating
•attempts or threatens suicide or runs away.
These signs and behaviours may indicate other problems,
but bullying should be considered a possibility and should
be investigated.
1. Report bullying incidents to the club welfare officer
or a member of the clubs committee or contact the
County Football Association Child Protection Officer
2. In cases of serious bullying, the incidents will be
referred to the CFA CPO for advice and possibly to the
FA Case Management System
3. Parents/carers should be informed and will be asked to
come in for a meeting to discuss the problem
4. If necessary and appropriate, Police will be consulted
5. The bullying behaviour or threats of bullying must be
investigated and the bullying stopped quickly
6. An attempt will be made to help the bully (bullies)
change their behaviour
7. If mediation fails and the bullying is seen to continue
the club will initiate disciplinary action under the club
Recommended Club Action
If the club decides it is appropriate for them to deal
with the situation they should follow the procedure
outlined below.
1. Reconciliation by getting the parties together. It may be
that a genuine apology solves the problem
2. If this fails or is not appropriate a small panel (made up
from chairman, club welfare officer, secretary,
committee members) should meet with the
parents/carers and child alleging bullying to get details
of the allegation. Minutes should be taken for clarity,
which should be agreed by all as a true account
3. The same three persons should meet with the alleged
bully and parents/carers and put the incident raised to
them to answer and give their view of the allegation.
Minutes should again be taken and agreed
The Football Association
Anti-Bullying Policy for
Football Clubs
Recommended Guidelines
4. If bullying has in their view taken place, the individual
should be warned and put on notice of further action
i.e. temporary or permanent suspension if the bullying
continues. Consideration should be given as to whether
a reconciliation meeting between parties is appropriate
at this time
5. In some cases the parent/carers of the bully or bullied
player can be asked to attend training sessions, if they
are able to do so, and if appropriate. The club committee
should monitor the situation for a given period to
ensure the bullying is not being repeated
6. All coaches involved with both individuals should be
made aware of the concerns and outcome of the
process i.e. the warning.
In the Case of Adults Reported to be Bullying Anyone
Within the Club Under 18
1. The CFA CPO should always be informed and will
advise on action to be taken where appropriate
2. It is anticipated that in most cases where the allegation
is made regarding a team manager, official or coach,
The FA’s Child Protection and Best Practice awareness
training may be recommended
3. More serious cases may be referred to the Police
and/or Social Services.
•The club will have a written constitution, which includes
what is acceptable and proper behaviour for all members
of which the anti-bullying policy is one part
•All club members and parents will sign to accept the
constitution upon joining the club
•The club welfare officer will raise awareness about
bullying and why it matters, and if issues of bullying arise
in the club, will consider meeting with members to
discuss the issue openly and constructively.
This policy is based on guidance provided to
schools by KIDSCAPE.
KIDSCAPE is a voluntary organisation committed to help
prevent child bullying. KIDSCAPE can be contacted on
0207 730 3300 or you can access their website via
You may also wish to access, another
website designed to give advice and guidance to parents
and children who are faced with dealing with bullying.
We would like to thank the ASA who have shared their
Anti-Bullying Policy for Clubs on which this recommended
FA Club Anti-Bullying Policy has been developed.