Safeguarding Children Policy

1. Safeguarding Policy Statement

Parkfield Youth Footballl Club (“the Club”) recognises its responsibility to safeguard the welfare of all children and young people (defined as any person under the age of 18) involved in football which it organises or which it supervises and is committed to working to provide them with a safe environment. The Club subscribes to The Football Association’s Child Protection Best Practice Policy and Procedures, Safeguarding Children and Young People in Football and endorse and adopt the Policy Statement contained in that document namely:-

“Every child or young person, defined as any person under the age of 18, who plays or participates in football should be able to take part in an enjoyable and safe environment and should be protected from abuse. This is the responsibility of every adult involved in football. The FA recognises its responsibility to safeguard the welfare of all children and young people by protecting them from physical, sexual or emotional harm and from neglect or bullying. The FA is, therefore, committed to working to provide a safe environment for all children and young people to participate in the sport to the best of their abilities so long as they choose to do so”.

2. Key Principles

The key principles of this Safeguarding Children Policy and that of the FA are that:-

  • The child’s welfare is, and must always be, the paramount consideration
  • All children and young people have the right to be protected from abuse regardless of their age, gender, disability, culture, language, racial origin, religious beliefs or sexual orientation
  • All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately
  • Working in partnership with other organisations, children and young people and their parents/carers is essential

3. Acknowledgement

We acknowledge that every child or young person who plays or participates in football should be able to take part in an enjoyable safe environment and be protected from poor practice and abuse. The Club recognises that this is the responsibility of every adult involved in football organised or supervised by the Club.

4. Role

The Club has a role to play in safeguarding the welfare of all children and young people by protecting them from physical, sexual or emotional harm and from neglect or bullying. It is noted and accepted that the Football Association regulations (set out in Appendix 2A hereto) apply to all persons involved in football whether in a paid or voluntary capacity. This means whether you are a volunteer, match official, helper on club tours, coach, club official or medical staff.

The Club endorses and will apply the Football Association regulations and will treat any infraction of those regulations as misconduct which will be the subject of the disciplinary procedures set out in the League Rules in addition to any other procedures which may be undertaken by any other body or authority.

The Club also endorses and adopts the FA’s Safeguarding Children and Best Practice Guidelines for recruiting volunteers and will:-

  • Develop a role profile
  • Request identification documents
  • As a minimum, meet and discuss with the applicants and where possible will conduct interviews before appointing
  • Request and follow up with 2 references before appointing
  • Require an FA CRB Unit Enhanced Disclosure where appropriate in line with FA Guidelines
  • All current Club officials with direct access to children and young people will be required to complete a CRB Enhanced Disclosure via the FA CRB Unit.

If there are concerns regarding the appropriateness of an individual who is already involved or who has approached the Club to become one of its officials, guidance will be sought from the Football Association. It is noted and accepted that the FA will consider the relevance and significance of the information obtained via the FA CRB Unit and that all decisions will be made in the best interests of children and young people.

It is accepted that the FA aims to prevent people with a history of relevant and significant offending from having contact with children or young people and the opportunity to influence policies or practice with children or young people. This is to prevent direct sexual or physical harm to children and young people and to minimise the risk of “grooming” within football.

5. Whistle Blowing

The Club supports the FA’s whistle blowing policy. Any adult or young person with concerns about a adult in a position of trust with football can ‘whistle blow’ by contacting The FA Safeguarding Team on 0800 169 1863, by writing to The FA Case Manager at The Football Association, Wembley Stadium, PO Box 1966, London SW1P 9EQ, by emailing [email protected] or alternatively by going direct to the Police, Children’s Social Care or the NSPCC.

The Club Club encourages everyone to know about The FA’s Whistle Blowing Policy and to utilise it if necessary.

6. Club Welfare Officer

The Club has appointed a Club Welfare Officer in line with The FA’s role profile and required completion of the Safeguarding Children and Welfare Officers Workshop. The post holder will be involved with Welfare Officer training provided by The FA and/or County FA. The Club Welfare Officer is the first point of contact for all club members regarding concerns about the welfare of any child or young person. The Club Welfare Officer will liaise directly with the County FA (CFA) Welfare Officer and will be familiar with the procedures for referring any concerns. They will also play a proactive role in increasing awareness of Respect, poor practice and abuse amongst club members.

7. Bullying

We acknowledge and endorse The FA’s identification of bullying as a category of abuse. Bullying of any kind is not acceptable at our club. If bullying does occur, all players or parents/carers should be able to tell and know that incidents will be dealt with promptly. Incidents need to be reported to the Club Welfare Officer in cases of serious bullying the CFA Welfare Officer may be contacted.

8. Codes of Conduct

Codes of Conduct for coaches, players, officials and parents/carers have been implemented by the Club and are contained in Appendix 2B. Failure to comply with the Code of Conduct constitutes misconduct which may the subject of disciplinary sanction in accordance with the FA/league rules.

9. Reporting Concerns

Reporting your concerns about the welfare of a child or young person. Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility if you are worried about a child it is important that you report your concerns – no action is not an option.

i. If you are worried about a child then you need to report your concerns to the Club Welfare Officer.

ii. If the issue is one of poor practice the Club Welfare Officer will either:
•deal with the matter themselves or
•seek advice from the CFA Welfare Officer

iii. If the concern is more serious – possible child abuse, where possible, contact the CFA Welfare Officer first, then immediately contact the Police or Children’s Social Care.

iv. If the child needs immediate medical treatment take them to a hospital or call an ambulance and tell them this is a child protection concern. Let your Club Welfare Officer know what action you have taken, they in turn will inform the CFA Welfare Officer.

v. If at any time you are not able to contact your Club Welfare Officer or the matter is clearly serious then you can either:
•contact your CFA Welfare Officer directly
•contact The FA Safeguarding Team on 0800 169 1863 or [email protected]
•contact the Police or Children’s Social Care
•call the NSPCC 24 hour Helpline for advice on 0808 800 5000 or text 88858 or email [email protected]

10. Further Advice

Further advice on Safeguarding Children matters can be obtained from:-

  • The NSPCC Child Protection 24 hour Helpline 0808 800 5000
  • www.TheFA.com/football-rules-governance/ safeguarding
  • www.TheFA.com/goal
  • The FA Child Protection team
  • Emailing – [email protected]
  • The FA Safeguarding Children general enquiry line 0845 210 8080