Safeguarding and Children

Porthmadog Sailing Club Safeguarding and Children Policy Statement


Porthmadog Sailing Club (PSC) is committed to safeguarding children taking part in its activities from physical, sexual or emotional harm, neglect or bullying. We recognise that the safety, welfare and needs of the child are paramount and that any child, irrespective of age, disability, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual or gender identity or social status, has a right to protection from discrimination and abuse.

Porthmadog Sailing Club (PSC) takes all reasonable steps to ensure that, through safe recruitment, appropriate operating procedures and training, it offers a safe and fun environment to children taking part in its events and activities.

For the purposes of this policy anyone under the age of 18 should be considered as a child. All members of the Club should be aware of the policy.


Club Safeguarding Officer


The Club Safeguarding Officers are:


Martin Matthias Telephone: 07970832850 E-mail: Commodore@sailing-club.org

Carol McWeeney E-mail: carolann.mcweeney@outlook.com

Gwynedd County Council Senior Safeguarding Children Officer: Delyth Lloyd Griffiths

Telephone: 01286 679007 E-mail: DiogeluAddysg@Gwynedd.llyw.cymru

Wales Safeguarding Procedures (2020) can be found at: https://www.safeguarding.wales/ They can also be downloaded as an app.


Coaching\Training


It is currently the policy of the club that members do not offer organised training or coaching sessions or activities to children. Any training offered to children would only go ahead in the presence of a parent\carer. Unless this changes there no requirement for trainers to hold a DBS Certificate.


Good Practice


All members of the Club should follow the good practice guidelines attached, and agree to abide by the Club Code of Conduct and the RYA Racing Charter contained in the Racing Rules of Sailing. Those volunteering with young people should be aware of the guidance on recognising abuse.

Adults (who are not the parents\carers) are requested not to enter the showers and changing rooms at times when children are changing. If this is unavoidable it is advised that they are accompanied by another adult.

The Club will seek written consent from parents/carers before taking photos or video of a child at an event or publishing such images. Parents should be prepared to identify themselves if requested and state their purpose for photography/filming. If the Club publishes images of children, no identifying information other than names will be included. Any concerns about inappropriate or intrusive photography or the inappropriate use of images should be reported to the Club Safeguarding Officer.


Concerns


Anyone who is concerned about a young member’s welfare, either outside the sport or within the Club, should inform the Club Safeguarding Officer immediately, in strict confidence. The Club Safeguarding Officer will follow the attached procedures.


 












Porthmadog Sailing Club

Safeguarding and

Child Protection

Policy and

Guidelines

October 2020

Taken From RYA Guidance

Updated February 2020


Royal Yachting Association RYA House, Ensign Way Hamble, Southampton, SO31 4YA www.rya.org.uk/go/safeguarding Tel: 023 8060 4104/4226 E-mail: safeguarding@rya.org.uk




RYA Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy and Guidelines

If you require any of this information in a different language or accessible format, please contact the RYA’s Safeguarding and Equality Manager on 023 8060 4104 or e-mail safeguarding@rya.org.uk

Contents

1 Introduction

PART 1 − POLICY

2 Policy Statements

Porthmadog Sailing Club Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy Statement

PART 2 – PROCEDURES

3 Designated Person

4 Recruitment and training

5 Good practice guidelines

Minimising risk

Additional vulnerability

Grooming

Bullying

Responsibilities of staff and volunteers

Parental responsibility and club liability

Changing rooms and showers

Organising and hosting events

Communication and Images

Photography, images and video

6 Handling concerns, reports or allegations

Reporting Procedures

PART 3 – INFORMATION AND SAMPLE DOCUMENTS

7 Useful Contacts

8 Sample Documents

Sample Document 1 – Application form

Sample Document 2 – Reference request

Sample Document 3 – Self-declaration form

Sample Document 4 – Good Practice Guide

Sample Document 5 – Club/Class Association Code of Conduct

Sample Document 6 – Booking and Parental Consent form

Sample Document 7 – Safeguarding and Child Protection referral form

Appendix A – What is child abuse?

Appendix B − RYA Instructor Code of Conduct

Appendix C – RYA Coach Code of Ethics and Conduct


1 Introduction

Revised Feb 2020

These guidelines have been produced by the RYA to help our club to enable children and young people to enjoy the sport of sailing in all its forms, in a safe environment. This policy has been adapted to meet the requirements of Porthmadog Sailing Club. The original document can be downloaded in its entirety from the RYA’s website, www.rya.org.uk/go/safeguarding

Definition of a child

The Children Act 1989 defined any person under the age of 18 as a ‘child’. In this document and in day to day communications the terms ‘children’ and ‘young people’ are both used, recognising that older teenagers may prefer not to be referred to as ‘children’ although they are still children in the eyes of the law.

Safeguarding adults

Many of the safeguarding principles in these guidelines also apply to ‘vulnerable adults’ or ‘adults at risk’, but the categories of abuse and the statutory procedures to be followed in the case of a concern are different. Please refer to our separate guidance on Safeguarding Adults which has also been adapted for Porthmadog Sailing Club. The original guidance can also be found at www.rya.org.uk/go/safeguarding

RYA requirements

RYA Recognised Training Centres (RTCs) that teach under 18s, including all OnBoard and Team15 clubs and centres, are required to have a formal safeguarding and child protection policy which is checked as part of their annual inspection. RYA British Youth Sailing (BYS) Recognised Clubs and Recognised Junior and Youth Class Associations are also required to adopt and maintain a safeguarding and child protection policy. Porthmadog Sailing Club is not included in any of the above categories, however the Club feels that a Safeguarding Policy is important in ensuring the well-being of all concerned, as outlined below.

Recommended actions

Although Porthmadog Sailing Club is not an RTC or BYS Recognised Club but our membership includes children and families, it is strongly recommended that we adopt a similar policy and some straightforward procedures to put the policy into practice.

There are several good reasons for doing this:

  • to safeguard children from physical or emotional harm, both on and off the water

  • to assure parents that their children are as safe at our club as they are when taking part in any other sport or leisure activity

  • to raise awareness amongst all of our members and employees, so that they know what to do if they are concerned about a child, whether the concern relates to:

  • the child’s welfare at our site or

  • something happening outside the sport that a child discloses to someone they trust at our club

  • to protect instructors and officials by giving them some practical, common sense guidelines to avoid placing themselves in situations

  • where they are open to allegations which could seriously damage their lives and careers

  • to protect the club, by showing that we have taken ‘all reasonable steps’ to provide a safe environment.

Our club has taken the following steps:

1. Adopted a policy statement that defines the club’s commitment to providing a safe environment for children. ‘Child Protection’ can be an emotive term because people associate it with the most serious kinds of child abuse. ‘Safeguarding’ has become a more common term for promoting children’s welfare, whilst ‘child protection’ tends to refer to actions taken in response to a specific concern or allegation.

Although we do not have a training centre attached to our club, the policy should be adopted by the whole club and all members should be aware of it, not just those directly involved in children’s training and activities. ‘Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility’ (Statutory guidance ‘Working Together to Safeguard Children’ 2018).

2. Produced a simple code of practice and procedures governing how the club runs. This covers:

  • the safe recruitment of staff/volunteers who will be in contact with children (see Section 4)

  • good practice guidelines to ensure the safety and welfare of children at all times whilst at our site, both on and off the water (see Section 5)

  • handling concerns, reports or allegations (see Section 6).

Everyone in the club should be aware of the policy and have access to the supporting procedures, and those working with children must be familiar with the procedures and receive appropriate induction and training.

As with all things an element of common sense must be used, and the policy and guidance should not get in the way of families spending time together and the enjoyment of sailing at our club.

Much of the guidance is currently not applicable to Porthmadog sailing Club, as it is currently the policy of the club that members do not offer organised training or coaching sessions or activities to children unsupervised by parents\carers. However it has been included in the guidance in case the Committee decide at a future date to change this policy.

If the Club does change this policy, and anti-bullying policy will become necessary.

Note: I have left employees within the policy and guidance as we employ part time cleaners

I have removed the term volunteers, as all volunteers at the club are members


PART 1 − POLICY

2 Policy Statements

Porthmadog Sailing Club Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy Statement

Taken from RYA Policy and Guidance Revised Jan 2020

This policy refers to anyone under the age of 18, defined as a child by the Children Act 1989[1]. The policy applies to all members of Porthmadog Sailing Club, contractors and volunteers.

The club is committed to safeguarding children taking part in its activities from physical, sexual or emotional harm, neglect or bullying. We recognise that the safety, welfare and needs of the child are paramount and that any child, irrespective of age, disability, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual or gender identity or social status, has a right to protection from discrimination and abuse.

The club takes all reasonable steps to ensure that, through safe recruitment, appropriate operating procedures and training, it offers a safe and fun environment to children taking part in club events and activities.

The child’s experience of the sport is our priority. We will create a safe and welcoming environment, both on and off the water, where children can have fun and develop their skills and confidence. We will treat all children with respect, celebrate their achievements and listen to their views and experiences.

All affiliated clubs such as ours are encouraged to adopt and implement similar policies and procedures. The RYA will provide them with information and support.

Porthmadog Sailing Club:

· Recognises that safeguarding children is the responsibility of everyone, not just those working directly with them.

· Carefully recruits and selects all employees, contractors and volunteers in roles involving close contact with children and provides them with appropriate information or training.

· Responds swiftly and appropriately to all complaints and concerns about poor practice or suspected abuse, referring to external agencies as necessary.

· Regularly reviews safeguarding procedures and practices in the light of experience or to take account of legislative, social or technological changes.

This policy will be reviewed by the PSC Committee annually, and will follow recommendations made by the RYA Board at least every three years.

The Club Safeguarding Officer (Martin Matthias) should be notified of all relevant concerns, allegations or complaints.

Policy Statement

Porthmadog Sailing Club (PSC) is committed to safeguarding children taking part in its activities from physical, sexual or emotional harm, neglect or bullying. We recognise that the safety, welfare and needs of the child are paramount and that any child, irrespective of age, disability, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual or gender identity or social status, has a right to protection from discrimination and abuse.

Porthmadog Sailing Club (PSC) takes all reasonable steps to ensure that, through safe recruitment, appropriate operating procedures and training, it offers a safe and fun environment to children taking part in its events and activities.

For the purposes of this policy anyone under the age of 18 should be considered as a child. All members of the Club should be aware of the policy.

Club Safeguarding Officer

The Club Safeguarding Officer is: Martin Matthias

Telephone: 07970832850

E-mail: Commodore@sailing-club.org

Gwyned County Council Senior Safeguarding Children Officer: Delyth Lloyd Griffiths

Telephone: 01286 679007

E-mail: DiogeluAddysg@Gwynedd.llyw.cymru

Wales Safeguarding Procedures (2020) can be found at: https://www.safeguarding.wales/

They can also be downloaded as an app.

Coaching\Training

It is currently the policy of the club that members do not offer organised training or coaching sessions or activities to children. Any training offered to children would only go ahead in the presence of a parent\carer. Unless this changes there no requirement for trainers to hold a DBS Certificate.

Good Practice

All members of the Club should follow the good practice guidelines attached, and agree to abide by the Club Code of Conduct and the RYA Racing Charter contained in the Racing Rules of Sailing. Those volunteering with young people should be aware of the guidance on recognising abuse.

Adults (who are not the parents\carers) are requested not to enter the showers and changing rooms at times when children are changing. If this is unavoidable it is advised that they are accompanied by another adult.

The Club will seek written consent from parents/carers before taking photos or video of a child at an event or publishing such images. Parents should be prepared to identify themselves if requested and state their purpose for photography/filming. If the Club publishes images of children, no identifying information other than names will be included. Any concerns about inappropriate or intrusive photography or the inappropriate use of images should be reported to the Club Safeguarding Officer.

Concerns

Anyone who is concerned about a young member’s welfare, either outside the sport or within the Club, should inform the Club Safeguarding Officer immediately, in strict confidence. The Club Safeguarding Officer will follow the attached procedures.

Any member of the Club failing to comply with the Safeguarding policy or any relevant Codes of Conduct may be subject to disciplinary action under Club Rule XX.


PART 2 – PROCEDURES

3 Designated Person

Revised Feb 2020

Although everyone has a role to play in ensuring that children are safe, it is recommended that a designated individual has specific responsibility for implementing our policy. PSC uses the term ‘Club Safeguarding Officer’. They should inform the RYA Safeguarding Manager when they are appointed, to ensure that they receive relevant information and advice.

The Safeguarding Officer within PSC should ideally be someone with relevant knowledge and experience, who is perceived as being approachable and having a child-centred approach. They don’t need to be an expert – that is the role of Children’s Services and the Police. If they haven’t received any previous training, see page 12 for information.

The designated person’s role description could include:

  • Maintaining up-to-date policy and procedures, compatible with the RYA’s.

  • Ensuring that relevant staff and members are aware of and follow the procedures, including implementing safe recruitment procedures.

  • Advising the management committee on safeguarding and child protection issues.

  • Maintaining contact details for local Children’s Services and Police.

If you are unable to obtain contact details from your local authority’s website or the phone book, the RYA Safeguarding and Equality Manager can provide this information on request.

If there is a concern, the designated person would:

  • Be the first point of contact for any concerns or allegations, from children or adults, ensuring that confidentiality is maintained in all cases.

  • Decide on the appropriate action to be taken, in line with the club’s procedures and in conjunction with the person in charge (Commodore, Principal etc).

  • Keep the RYA informed as necessary (see flowcharts in Section 6).

Everyone in the club should know who the Safeguarding Officer is and how to contact them. An RYA poster for clubs and training centres to display this information can be downloaded from the RYA website www.rya.org.uk/go/safeguarding or contact the Safeguarding and Equality Manager (see below).

RYA designated person

RYA Safeguarding and Equality Manager, tel. 023 8060 4104, RYA Safeguarding Officer, tel. 023 8060 4226, e-mail safeguarding@rya.org.uk

Contact details for the Safeguarding Leads at RYA Scotland, RYA Cymru Wales and RYA Northern Ireland are shown in Section 7.


4 Recruitment and training

Revised Feb 2018

If a good recruitment policy is adopted, and safeguarding is covered in the club’s risk assessment and operating procedures, the opportunity for an individual with poor intent towards children to gain access to the club or to abuse a position of trust should be minimised.

All applications, whether for paid or voluntary work, should be subject to an appropriate level of scrutiny. The level of checking you carry out should be proportionate to the role and the level of risk involved and in line with relevant statutory requirements. The risk is higher if the person will be in regular contact with the same child or children, in sole charge of children with no parents or other adults present, and/or in a role involving authority and trust, such as an instructor or coach.

The club should agree a clear policy and apply it fairly and consistently:

  • who to check

– paid staff and/or volunteers (if they have the same level of responsibility and contact, they should be treated in the same way whether they are paid or not)

– new applicants only or existing volunteers/staff as well (if you are introducing checking for the first time you might want to start with new applicants and then check your existing volunteers or staff in priority order, depending on their role)

– those with specific responsibilities (eg. instructor, child protection/Safeguarding officer, coach, head of cadet section) or anyone who regularly helps with junior/youth activity

  • the level of check to be conducted for each category

– references

– self-declaration – see Sample Document 3 (please note that this does not ask about criminal record; if you are entitled to ask an applicant about their spent criminal record it is recommended that you request a Criminal Records Disclosure)

– Enhanced Criminal Records Disclosure (and Barred List check if appropriate) or membership of the Protection of Vulnerable Groups Scheme (Scotland only), if the role is eligible.

It is a criminal offence under the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006

  • for a Barred individual to work in Regulated Activity/Regulated Work

  • for an organisation to knowingly allow someone who has been Barred to work in Regulated Activity/Regulated Work, and

  • for an organisation to fail to make a referral to the Disclosure and Barring Service/Disclosure Scotland if they have dismissed someone from Regulated Activity/Regulated Work for harming a child or vulnerable adult or placing them at risk of harm, or would have dismissed them if they had not resigned.

Are they competent?

You are more likely to recruit and retain someone who is well suited to their role, and ensure equality of opportunity, if you:

  • provide the applicant with a clear job or role description so that they understand what the work involves

  • draw up a ‘person specification’ listing the key qualifications, skills, experience and qualities you’re looking for

  • check that the applicant is competent for the role, eg. they hold an appropriate and valid RYA instructor certificate, coach qualification or powerboat/safety boat certificate if required

  • provide an induction, training, mentoring or supervision to cover any areas where they may lack experience or confidence and familiarise them with our club’s operating procedures.

Are they safe?

If the role involves contact with children, you should at least:

  • ask them to provide information about their past career or relevant experience (see Sample Document 1 for sample application form)

  • ask their reasons for leaving earlier posts, or moving area, and make sure there are no unexplained gaps in their career history

  • explore their experience of and attitude towards working with children

  • take up references, at least one of which should be from someone who has first-hand knowledge of their previous work with children, and make the nature of the work clear to the referees (see Sample Document 2 for sample reference request).

If the role involves regularly training or supervising children or is a position of trust or authority over children’s welfare and eligible for a Criminal Records check, you are strongly advised to:

  • First ask the applicant to complete a self-declaration form (see Sample Document 3). Although they might make a false declaration, the fact that our club has these procedures in place may deter anyone with a criminal record related to their suitability to work with children from proceeding any further

  • Before confirming their appointment, ask the applicant to apply for an Enhanced Criminal Records Disclosure (with Barred List check if appropriate) or Protection of Vulnerable Groups scheme membership (see below).

Criminal Records Disclosures (DBS)

Revised Feb 2020

Organisations affiliated to or recognised by the RYA can access the DBS. The service is free for volunteers. A fee is payable to the DBS in the case of paid staff. Information is available from the RYA website www.rya.org.uk/go/safeguarding or contact disclosure@rya.org.uk

DBS checks should only be used in conjunction with the other checks listed above and not relied on in isolation. A clear Disclosure is not a guarantee that the applicant has never done anything wrong, it only shows whether or not they have been caught.

Although it is not a legal requirement for voluntary sports clubs or private employers to ask their staff or volunteers to apply for Disclosures, it is an offence to allow someone to undertake regulated activity/work if they have been barred from working with the relevant vulnerable group. There is a risk that determined known offenders who are no longer able to work undetected in the statutory sector may move into the voluntary and sports sectors. If groups from local schools come to our site, a school may request that we check our instructors or volunteers so that they are subject to the same level of scrutiny as the children’s teachers.

England, Wales and Northern Ireland

An individual is only eligible to apply for an Enhanced Disclosure, which will disclose their ‘spent’ as well as their ‘unspent’ record, if they will be in a position listed under the exceptions to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, ie. one that involves regularly teaching, training, instructing, caring for or supervising persons under 18. They can only be required to apply for the additional Barred List check if they will be undertaking ‘regulated activity’ with children or vulnerable adults as defined under the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006, amended by the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012.

Confidentiality and data storage

Revised Feb 2018

All personal information, including Disclosure information, should be treated as confidential, stored securely and only shared with those who need to see it in the course of their duties or to protect children, in accordance with the DBS Codes of Conduct and our club’s Data Privacy Policy.


RYA recruitment and induction policy Revised Feb 2020 The RYA requires all employees and contractors recruited to posts involving regular contact with children to provide references and to obtain an Enhanced Criminal Records Disclosure, with Barred List check if applicable, or to join the Protection of Vulnerable Groups Scheme (Scotland only) prior to confirmation of appointment. All RYA Instructors, Racing Coaches and Race Officials sign up to the relevant Codes of Conduct (see Appendices B and C). The Safeguarding and Child Protection policy statement is contained in the RYA Staff Handbook issued to all new employees. All RYA employees and contractors whose work will involve contact with children are required to familiarise themselves with these Guidelines and to undertake appropriate training and CPD.


Safeguarding Training


Revised Feb 2018

Organisations should ensure that all staff or volunteers working with children have undertaken training appropriate to their role. This may be through formal training, an online course, induction and mentoring and/or continuing professional development.

It is currently the policy of the club that members do not offer organised training or coaching sessions or activities to children. Any training offered to children would only go ahead in the presence of a parent\carer.

Workshops

The RYA has a number of Tutors accredited by UK Coaching to deliver a three-hour basic awareness workshop ‘Safeguarding and Protecting Children’ to RYA clubs and centres in England. We can also arrange workshops in Wales through UK Coaching. Any club or centre interested in running a workshop for 10-20 people should contact the RYA’s Safeguarding Officer on 023 8060 4226, safeguarding@rya.org.uk . Clubs and centres in Northern Ireland should contact the Child Protection in Sport Unit on 02890 351135. 

Places at open multi-sport ‘Safeguarding and Protecting Children’ workshops in England and Wales can be booked directly via UK Coaching – click on this link: http://www.ukcoaching.org/workshops/workshop-search

Some local authorities and Local Safeguarding Children Boards also provide safeguarding awareness training, but this will not be specific to a sports setting.

Online training

The RYA has developed an online safeguarding awareness course ‘Safe + Fun’ which is available through more than 60 RYA Training Centres. To find a centre, use the ‘Where’s my nearest’ function on the RYA website. It is a mandatory requirement for those intending to qualify as RYA Instructors, Senior Instructors or Racing Coaches to complete the online course prior to their Instructor or Coach course. The course is also available to anyone wishing to gain a basic awareness of safeguarding issues, or to refresh their knowledge.

A further online module for Club Safeguarding Officers is also available. Contact the RYA Safeguarding Officer at safeguarding@rya.org.uk or 023 8060 4226 to enrol.


5 Good practice guidelines

Culture

It is important to develop a culture within our club where both children and adults feel able to raise concerns, knowing that they will be taken seriously, treated confidentially and will not make the situation worse for themselves or others.

Minimising risk

(see also Good Practice Guide, Sample Document 4)

Revised Dec 2016

Plan the work of the club and promote good practice to minimise situations where adults are working unobserved or could take advantage of their position of trust. Good practice protects everyone – children, volunteers and staff.

These common sense guidelines should be available to everyone within the club:

  • Avoid spending any significant time working with children in isolation

  • Do not take children alone in a car, however short the journey

  • Do not take children to your home as part of your organisation’s activity

  • Where any of these are unavoidable, ensure that they only occur with the full knowledge and consent of someone in charge of the organisation or the child’s parents

  • Design training programmes that are within the ability of the individual child.

  • If a child is having difficulty with a wetsuit or buoyancy aid, ask them to ask a friend to help if at all possible

  • If you do have to help a child, make sure you are in full view of others, preferably another adult

  • Restrict communications with young people via mobile phone, e-mail or social media to group communications about organisational matters. If it’s essential to send an individual message, copy it to the child’s parent or carer.

You should never:

  • engage in rough, physical or sexually provocative games

  • allow or engage in inappropriate touching of any form

  • allow children to use inappropriate language unchallenged, or use such language yourself when with children

  • make sexually suggestive comments to a child, even in fun

  • fail to respond to an allegation made by a child; always act

  • do things of a personal nature that children can do for themselves.

It may sometimes be necessary 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 both the child (where possible) and their parents/carers. In an emergency situation which requires this type of help, parents/carers should be informed as soon as possible. In such situations it is important to ensure that any adult present is sensitive to the child and undertakes personal care tasks with the utmost discretion.

Additional vulnerability

Revised Jan 2016

Some children may be more vulnerable to abuse or find it more difficult to express their concerns. For example:

· a disabled child who relies on a carer to help them get changed may worry that they won’t be able to sail any more if they report the carer

· a deaf child may not be able to express themselves or speak confidentially if they need an interpreter

· a child who has experienced racism may find it difficult to trust an adult from a different ethnic background

· children with low self-esteem or mental health problems can be more vulnerable to bullying or abuse, as can gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender young people, or any child who has a characteristic that marks them out in others’ eyes as ‘different’.

Grooming

Added Dec 2016

Grooming is when someone develops a relationship with a child over a period of time to gain their trust for the purposes of sexual abuse or exploitation. Children and young people can be groomed online or face-to-face, by a stranger or by someone they know - for example a family member, friend or professional. For more information on possible signs of grooming, see https://www.nspcc.org.uk/preventing-abuse/child-abuse-and-neglect/grooming/ Sometimes the perpetrator grooms the entire family, building a relationship with the child’s parents/carers so that they are allowed more access to the child than would normally be the case.

Similar behaviour could be used to radicalise young people and recruit them to a religious or political cause. This is unlikely to happen in a sailing club setting, but under the government’s ‘Prevent’ strategy teachers and others working with young people receive training on recognising the warning signs.

Bullying

Revised Jan 2019

If a child alleges bullying or shows signs of being bullied, this must be investigated. For a definition of bullying, see Appendix A. Safeguarding and child protection procedures should include an Anti-Bullying policy. The RYA’s Anti-bullying policy is available on the website under Racing & Performance, British Youth Sailing, Information, Policy Guidance or click on this link: Youth and Junior Racing Policies.

The Child Protection in Sport Unit also publishes a sample Anti-bullying policy and guidance, see https://thecpsu.org.uk/help-advice/topics/anti-bullying/ Resources and advice for young people can be found on www.kidscape.org.uk and www.childline.org.uk

Children and young people could be asked to sign up to the Club Code of Conduct (see Sample Document 5) or to agree their own Code as a group.

Managing challenging behaviour

Revised Jan 2015

Guidance for instructors and coaches on handling young people who display challenging behaviour is available as a download from the RYA website www.rya.org.uk/go/safeguarding, under RYA Safeguarding and Child Protection Guidelines.

Responsibilities of staff and volunteers

Make sure your staff or volunteers are given clear roles and responsibilities, are aware of our club’s safeguarding policy and procedures and are issued with guidelines on:

  • following good practice (see Good Practice Guidelines above and Sample Document 4) and

  • recognising signs of abuse (see Appendix A).

RYA Coaches and Instructors are expected to comply with the RYA Codes and Conduct (see Appendices B and C).

Parental responsibility and club liability

Revised Jan 2015

Parents play an essential part in their children’s participation, but occasionally their desire to see their child achieve success can put the child under too much pressure or give rise to friction between families or interference in coaching. Clubs and class associations may wish to consider adopting a Code of Conduct (see Sample Document 5) that can be signed up to by everyone involved, whether they are participants, parents, staff or volunteers, so that everyone is aware of their responsibilities towards each other and appropriate action can be taken if anyone’s behaviour fails to meet the expectations set out in the Code.

Although clubs have a duty of care to their members, and particularly to young people who cannot take full responsibility for their own safety, parents must be responsible for their children’s welfare and behaviour, or designate another adult to take that responsibility, outside formal club-organised activities.

When children are attending an organised training or coaching session or activity, the organisers have a duty of care for their safety and welfare at all times. If the club/class/centre requires a parent (or designated responsible adult) to be on site, it must be made clear at what point responsibility transfers from the instructor, coach or organiser to the parent.

For information on a Club’s legal liability and duty of care, go to the Club Zone of the RYA website www.rya.org.uk/the-club-zone (you’ll need your club’s or class association’s login, please contact membership@rya.org.uk if you don’t know it) and select Club Management, Health & Safety, Organising and Managing Events to find a link to our ‘Race, Training and Event Management’ guide.

At this point in time PSC does not offer organised training or coaching sessions or activities to children. Any training offered to children would only go ahead in the presence of a parent\carer.


Changing rooms and showers

Revised Feb 2020

Shower areas should, where possible, be designed to allow both adults and children to shower and dress in reasonable privacy. Adults often feel uncomfortable either showering and changing in front of children, or being in a situation where they might be accused of watching children in the shower. As a minimum there should be separate male and female changing rooms and, if relevant, unisex disabled changing. If there is an opportunity to redevelop or refurbish changing facilities, clubs should endeavour to provide at least one flexible changing room that can be used by someone with a disability, or a family, or anyone with a reason for not wishing to change in front of others. Ideally you should be able to access the toilets without walking through the shower/changing area.

If you are not able to upgrade your facilities, you may be able to manage their use. It is preferable for adults to stay away from the changing rooms while there are children there. If this is unavoidable because adults are sailing at the same times, or the site is open to the public, we recommend that adults avoid being alone in a changing room with children. Parents should be made aware that adult club members and/or members of the public may be in the changing rooms.

Bullying can be an issue in changing rooms and showers (see Bullying on page 14).

If it is essential, in an emergency situation, for a male to enter a female changing area or vice versa, it is advised that they are accompanied by another adult of the opposite sex.

First aid and medical treatment

Revised Dec 2016

First aid, provided by an appropriately trained and qualified person, is part of an club’s normal duty of care. Obtain consent if medication or medical treatment is required in the absence of the parent/carer (see Sample Document 6).

Organising and hosting events (This is not currently relevant to PSC)

Revised Jan 2019

When hosting an open junior or youth event at our club, liaise with the relevant class association to ensure that all involved in the club of the event are operating to similar policies. It should be made clear to all young competitors and their parents that there is someone responsible for their welfare who can be contacted if they have any concerns.

A poster for you to display at your event, giving the contact details of the event Safeguarding officer, can be downloaded from www.rya.org.uk/go/safeguarding or contact the RYA Safeguarding Officer, e-mail safeguarding@rya.org.uk , tel. 023 8060 4226.

The RYA Racing Department, in conjunction with the recognised junior and youth classes, has developed guidelines covering all aspects of running a major junior or youth event and these are available to clubs and class associations on request. RYA organised events will be run under these guidelines.

The Child Protection in Sport Unit also publishes a comprehensive guide ‘Safe Sports Events’ https://thecpsu.org.uk/resource-library/tools/safe-sport-events-activities-and-competitions/ .

Away events (This is not currently relevant to PSC)