Child Protection Policy
Child Protection Policy
Berwick Speedway takes Child Protection issues very seriously and will act appropriately with regard to any issues which the Welfare Officer or Promoter feel is unacceptable. Berwick Speedway is committed to in providing a safe environment for young people.
· The child‟s welfare is paramount.
· All children whatever their age, culture, disability, gender, language, racial origin, religious belief and/or sexual identity, have the right to protection from abuse.
· All suspicions and allegations of inappropriate behaviour will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately.
· As defined in the Children Act 1989 / Working Together September 2016, anyone under the age of 18 years should be considered as a child for the purposes of this document.
The term Parents is used throughout this document as a generic term to represent Parents, Carers and Guardians.
The Policy also applies to people with disabilities and applies to other vulnerable adults, the response from statutory agencies is guided by separate legislation and guidance.
Code of Practice & Procedures
(a) Recruitment of Staff and Officials (licensed & un-licensed)
All Staff or Officials (paid or voluntary), must provide personal details, a self- declaration form and be subject to appropriate scrutiny. Applications to be a Promoter or Training Instructor or any other post that may involve working with Young People unsupervised or where parents are not in attendance, must complete a detailed SCB Application Form, provide References (which will be checked by letter – Template B & C) and full details regarding any Criminal Offences, which may be checked with The Criminal Records Bureau.
All Applicants requiring an SCB Licence must complete an SCB Licence Application Form including the provision of accurate information regarding their name, address, date and place of birth and full details regarding any Criminal Offences. For positions not requiring an SCB Licence, the Applicant must provide accurate information regarding their name, address, date and place of birth and complete a Self-Declaration Form (Template A) and the Promotion / Club must carry out appropriate checks including a Disclosure Barring Service check if it is felt appropriate.
(b) Prevention of abuse Berwick Speedway offers the following advice to Organisations, Instructors, Officials and Parents to ensure we do everything we can to protect children from abuse. Child abuse is a very difficult situation and having the right systems in place can help all concerned. Abusers have great difficulty operating in a well run organisation with good quality management and training.
· The club have implemented a Good Practice Guide to ensure the safety of all young people.
· A Welfare Officer – Mr D McCleary has been appointed to the club.
A CHILD PROTECTION OFFICER IS ALSO IN PLACE: Mrs ALLYSON POOLE
· All personnel will receive appropriate training in the prevention of child abuse.
· All staff and volunteers will be provided with clear roles.
· Guidelines will be issued on how to deal with the discovery of abuse.
· If a young person tells an official about abuse, they should follow agreed procedures.
(c) What to do if abuse is suspected/alleged to have occurred
If anyone, as the result of a direct approach, own observation or via a 3rd party becomes aware of possible abuse taking place you must REACT IMMEDIATELY.
· Ensure the safety of the Child – if immediate medical treatment is needed, take the Child to hospital or call an ambulance, inform doctors of your concerns and ensure they are aware it is a child protection issue;
· Make contact with the Welfare Officer immediately, otherwise the Individual will need to follow the procedures detailed below.
· Seek expert advice from Social Services or Police or one of the Organisations listed, who will advise on the action to be taken, including advice on contacting Parents.
· Make a full and factual record of events utilising the Incident Referral Form (Template F), forwarding copies as appropriate.
· If the individual being accused is connected with the SCB, the SCB Lead Child Protection Officer will consider suspension of the individual concerned following contact with the Social Services or Police. The case will be referred to the SCB Child Protection Panel following completion of the Police/Social Services investigation.
· It is NOT the role of the Welfare Officer to decide whether a child has been abused or not. This is the task of Social Services or Police who have the legal responsibility, or the NSPCC who also have powers to investigate child protection concerns under the Children Act.
It is never easy to respond to a young person who tells you that they are being abused and you may feel upset and worried yourself. At the earliest opportunity discuss the matter with your Organisation‟s Welfare Officer or the SCB Lead Child Protection Officer.
In all cases it is important that you always:
· stay calm - ensure the child is safe and feels safe.
· show and tell the child that you are taking what s/he says seriously.
· reassure the child and stress that s/he is not to blame.
· be honest, explain you will have to tell someone else to help stop the alleged abuse.
· make a note of what the child has said as soon as possible after the event.
· maintain confidentiality - only tell others if it will help protect the child.
CONTACT DETAILS FOR ADVICE
To obtain advice call any of the following.
You can remain anonymous if you wish.
Local Social Services : 01289 334000
NSPCC helpline: 0808 800 5000 www.nspcc.org.uk
ChildLine: 0800 1111 www.childline.org.uk
If you have had an allegation made against you, advice and support can be gained from the following sources:
ACU Head Office Gary Thompson (SCB / ACU Lead Protection Officer)
Tel : 01788 566400 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sportscoach UK 0113 274 4802 www.sportscoachuk.org
What is child abuse? Child abuse is a term used to describe ways in which children are harmed, usually by adults and often by people they know and trust. It refers to the damage done to a child‟s physical or mental health. Children can be abused within or outside their family, at school and in a sports or community environment. Child abuse can take many forms: Physical, Neglect, Sexual, Emotional or Bullying
Physical abuse is when Adults or other Children:
· physically hurt or injure children (e.g. by hitting, shaking, squeezing, biting or burning) or attempt to suffocate or drown children.
· give a child alcohol, inappropriate drugs or poison Including performance enhancing substances.
· in a sport situation, might occur when the nature and intensity of training exceeds the capacity of the child‟s immature and growing body. (e.g. we know how physically demanding motorcycle sport can be, so do not push the child‟s capabilities in competition further than the child can physically cope with).
Neglect includes situations in which Adults:
· fail to meet a child‟s basic physical needs (e.g. food, warm clothing, medication, etc.).
· consistently leave children alone and unsupervised.
· fail or refuse to give children love, affection or attention.
· in a sports situation, might occur if an Instructor or Supervisor fails to ensure children are safe or exposes them to undue cold or risk of injury (e.g. in motorcycle sport, do not put the child in a situation where they are frightened or force them to do something, which they feel may put them at risk. This also includes providing them with appropriate protective clothing).
Sexual abuse: Boys and girls are sexually abused when adults (male or female) or other young people use them to meet their own sexual needs. This could include:
· full sexual intercourse, masturbation, oral sex, fondling.
· showing children pornographic books, photographs or videos, or taking pictures for pornographic purposes.
· In a sport situations where physical contact (e.g. supporting or guiding children) could potentially create situations where sexual abuse may go unnoticed. This is particularly important in communal areas such as changing areas.
Emotional abuse can occur in a number of ways. For example, where:
· there is persistent lack of love or affection.
· there is constant overprotection which prevents children from socialising.
· children are frequently being shouted at or taunted.
· there is neglect, physical or sexual abuse.
· emotional abuse in sport might also include situations where parents or coaches subject children to constant criticism, bullying or unrealistic pressure to perform to high expectations.
For example, do not put your expectations in a child too high when he/she is in competition. This may have an adverse affect on their performance, they would be concentrating more on trying to please you than doing well in the event.
Bullying may be seen as deliberately hurtful behaviour, usually repeated over a period of time, where it is difficult for those bullied to defend themselves. The bully may often be another young person. Although anyone can be a target of bullying, victims are typically shy, sensitive and perhaps anxious or insecure. Sometimes they are singled out for physical reasons - being overweight, physically small, having a disability or belonging to a different race, faith or culture.
How would you recognise if a child is being abused?
It is not always easy to spot when children have been abused even for the most experienced carers. However, some of the more typical symptoms, which should trigger your suspicions would include:
· Unexplained or suspicious injuries such as bruising, cuts or burns, particularly if situated on a part of the body not normally prone to such injuries.
· sexually explicit language or actions.
· a sudden change in behaviour (e.g. becoming very quiet, withdrawn or displaying sudden outbursts of temper).
· The child describes what appears to be an abusive act involving him/her.
· a change observed over a long period of time (e.g. the child losing weight or becoming increasingly dirty or unkempt).
· a general distrust and avoidance of adults, especially with whom a close relationship would be expected.
· an unreasonable reaction to normal physical contact.
· difficulty in making friends or abnormal restrictions on socialising with others.
However, it is important to note that a child could be displaying some of all of these signs, or behaving in a way which is worrying - this does not necessarily mean the child is being abused. Similarly, there may not be any signs, you may just feel something is wrong. If you are worried, it is NOT your responsibility to decide if it is abuse BUT it is your responsibility to act on your concerns and do something about it.
Good Practice Guide for Officials
Child abuse, particularly sexual abuse, can arouse strong emotions in those facing such a situation. It is important to understand these feelings and not allow them to interfere with your judgement about any action to take. Abuse can occur within many situations including the home, school and the sporting environment. Some individuals will actively seek employment or voluntary work with young people in order to harm them.
A Promoter, Training Instructor, Manager or other Official may have regular contact with young people and be an important link in identifying cases where a young person needs protection. All cases of poor practice should be reported to the SCB Lead Child Protection Officer through the Welfare Officer. Everyone in sport should be encouraged to demonstrate exemplary behaviour in order, both to protect Children and themselves from allegations.
The following are common sense examples of how to create a positive culture and climate within sport:
· Always work in an open environment (e.g. Avoiding private or unobserved situations and encouraging an open environment (eg. No secrets)
· Treat all young people/disabled adults equally, and with respect and dignity
· Put the welfare of each young person first, before winning or achieving goals
· Maintain a safe, appropriate distance with Children (e.g. It is not appropriate to have an intimate relationship with a child or to share a room with them)
· Build balanced relationships based on mutual trust which empowers children to share in the decision-making process
· Make sport fun, enjoyable and promote fair play
· Ensure if any form of manual / physical support is required, it is provided openly and according to SCB guidelines. Physical contact should only be used if no other means are available in a coaching context. Young people should be consulted and their Parents advised beforehand.
· Involve Parents / Carers wherever possible (e.g. for the responsibility of their children in the changing rooms). If groups have to be supervised in the changing rooms, always ensure Parents / Instructors / Officials work in pairs.
· For a Mixed team, arrange both male and female accompanying Officials. (NB. same gender abuse can also occur).
· Ensure that at tournaments or residential Training Sessions, adults should not enter children‟s rooms or invite children into their rooms.
· Be excellent role models – this includes not smoking or drinking alcohol in the company of young people.
· Give enthusiastic and constructive feedback rather than negative criticism.
· Recognise the developmental needs and capacity of young people / disabled adults – avoid excessive training or competition; do not push against their will.
· Secure parental consent in writing to acting in loco parentis, if the need arises to give permission for the administration of emergency first aid and/or other medical treatment
· Be aware of any medicines being taken by participants, or existing injuries.
· Keep a written record of any injury that occurs, along with the details of any treatment given.
· Request written parental consent if Officials are required to transport young people in their cars. In situation such as these it would be advisable to have Business Insurance cover
· Give careful consideration to the use of mobile phones or social media sites to ensure information shared is content and age appropriate.
You should never:
· Allow or engage in rough, physical or sexually provocative games, including horseplay.
· Allow or engage in inappropriate touching of any form.
· Allow children to use inappropriate language unchallenged.
· Make sexually suggestive comments to a child, even in fun.
· Let allegations a child makes go unchallenged or unrecorded; always act.
· Do things of a personal nature that children can do for themselves.
However, it may be sometimes necessary for your staff/ volunteers to do things of a personal nature for children, particularly if they are very young or disabled. These tasks should only be carried out with the full understanding and consent of parents. In an emergency situation, which requires this type of help, parents should be fully informed. In such situations, it is important to ensure all staff/volunteers are sensitive to the child and undertake personal care tasks with the utmost discretion. In addition, medical consent should be obtained in the event where medication or treatment is required to be administered in the absence of the parent/guardian; this includes hospitalisation. Such procedures would cover the organisation from accusations of neglect.
Guidelines for use of Photography, Filming, Videoing at Sporting Events
The SCB wishes to promote a positive image and in order to do this there has to be a number of safeguards to protect young people through the media in order to promote the image of Speedway racing. There is evidence that some people have used sporting events as an opportunity to take inappropriate photographs or film footage of young and disabled sportspeople in vulnerable positions, therefore, Parents must sign a parental consent agreeing to photographs/video images being taken of their child that may be displayed on the ACU Website / Magazine or other motorcycle sport publications or websites for promotional aspects of the Sport.
Photographers, Film & Video operators etc. wishing to record events at the Meeting must seek prior accreditation with the Promotion. Full details must be recorded. Spectators must not use cameras/film/video equipment with a telescopic or zoom lens. Public information: Details concerning cameras/video and filming equipment must be published in the Programmes and be announced over the public address system. The recommended wording is: Photography: Patrons please note only those with prior accreditation may engage in any video, zoom or close range photography. The Promoter reserves the right to exclude anyone not complying with this Policy.
Videoing as a coaching aid: there is no intention to prevent club coaches and teachers using video equipment as a legitimate coaching aid. However, performers and their parents/carers should be aware that this is part of the coaching programme and care should be taken in the storing of such films.