Safe4Athletes Handbook

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Safe4Athletes Handbook

Policies and Procedures for Youth Sports

Authored by Safe4Athletes

Safe4Athletes Policies and Procedures
1. ADOPT POLICIES that (a) require criminal background checks for coaches, volunteers and others before they are permitted to work directly with children and (b) clearly define prohibited conduct in a detailed way, from poor instruction or supervision practices and bullying behaviors, to more serious allegations of professional misconduct such as sexual harassment, or physical, emotional, or sexual abuse. Coaches, employees and volunteers sign a code of conduct agreement acknowledging having read and understanding their obligation to adhere to the policy.

2. EDUCATE CLUB COACHES, ATHLETES AND VOLUNTEERS about these inappropriate behaviors and the existence of a club conduct policy that must be followed.

3. APPOINT two parents or other volunteers as ATHLETE WELFARE ADVOCATES (AWA) TO ASSIST CLUB ATHLETES. Athletes are often afraid of confronting more powerful coaches or even their own parents when faced with a distressing situation. The AWA distributes educational materials and invites athletes to call or email to schedule a confidential conversation if they need help handling any situation that makes them feel uncomfortable or unsafe.

4. ESTABLISH AND IMPLEMENT THE FOLLOWING APPROPRIATE PROCEDURES that will restore a safe environment if misconduct occurs:

· availability of an Athlete Welfare Advocate to meet in a confidential and supportive environment to assist the athlete (and/or parents) in identifying and addressing the concern

· immediately correct any hostile environment or situation that threatens the safety and well-being of participants

· if appropriate in the case of minor transgressions, the Athlete Welfare Advocate works with the club president to resolve the situation to the satisfaction of the affected athlete (and his/her parents) or initiate a formal complaint

· in more serious situations, temporarily suspend the coach or other individual accused of misconduct for the duration of the complaint process that includes the following elements:

· the AWA represents or accompanies the athlete who is never required to confront her/his alleged abuser

· the accused is given notice of all charges

· the club appoints an impartial Fact Finder to interview all parties

· the accused receives a full hearing before and the opportunity to submit a detailed written statement to the Fact Finder

· the Fact Finder presents the facts and recommendations, including the statements of the accused, the complainant, and all witnesses to an Ethics Panel that determines if club policy was violated and, if necessary, imposes appropriate sanctions

· the club reports any coach or volunteer determined to have committed serious misconduct and whose employment or affiliation with the club was terminated to the club's national sports governing body (NGB) with a request to revoke the individual's membership and ability to coach or be affiliated with all NGB member clubs

Publication Date:
1492277622 / 9781492277620
Page Count:
Binding Type:
US Trade Paper
Trim Size:
8.5" x 11"
Full Color
Related Categories:
Sports & Recreation / General

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