Child protection and safeguarding children and young people policy
1. ‘Children and young people’ – Anyone who is under the age of 18. However, where a 17 – year – old is playing in the adult game and/or training session it is essential that every reasonable precaution is taken to ensure their safety and wellbeing are protected.
2. ‘Bath Rugby Foundation’’ and ‘Foundation’’– Bath Rugby Community Foundation.
3. Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) – The DBS is responsible for processing requests for criminal records checks, taking decisions on whether it is appropriate to place a person on or remove a person from the DBS Children’s or Adults’ Barred List for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Purpose of Policy
Bath Rugby Foundation fully recognises its responsibilities of everyone involved for protecting children and young people and to safeguard the welfare of all children and young people involved in its activities.
Bath Rugby Foundation identify that because of our day to day contact with children and young people, Foundation employees and volunteers are well placed to observe the outward signs of abuse. The Foundation will therefore maintain the following.
This policy applies to all Bath Rugby Foundation employees and volunteers working on behalf of the Foundation. The policy has five main elements:
- Ensuring we practice safe recruitment in checking the suitability of staff and volunteers to work with children and young people.
- Raising awareness of children and young people protection issues and equipping them with the skills needed to keep them safe.
- Developing and then implementing procedures for identifying and reporting cases, or suspected cases, of abuse.
- Supporting children and young people who have been abused in accordance with their agreed young person protection plan.
- Establishing a safe environment in which children and young people can learn and develop.
Action to be taken by Bath Rugby Foundation
The Foundation confirms that it adheres to the Rugby Football Union’s Safeguarding Policy and its procedures, actices and guidelines. The Foundation endorse and adopt the Policy Statement contained in that document and any successor policy (see appendix A for summary).
The Foundation will follow the children and young people protection procedures set out by the Bath and North East Somerset Local Safeguarding Children Board www.safeguarding-bathnes.org.uk/children and will take account of the national guidance issued by the Department of Education:
- Ensure we have a ‘Designated Safeguarding Officer’ (DSO) who has received appropriate training and support for this role (Programme Development and Impact Manager – Caryl Thomas). Ensure all employees and volunteers know the name of the Designated Safeguarding Officer.
- Ensure all employees and volunteers understand their responsibilities in being alert to the signs of abuse and responsibility for recording any concerns and referring them to the safeguarding officer.
- Ensure all staff who will be working with and alongside children receive children and young people protection awareness training and that lead safeguarding persons are trained every two years in accordance with the Bath and North East Somerset Local Safeguarding Children Board.
- Develop effective links with relevant agencies and co-operate as required with their enquiries regarding children and young person’s protection matters including attendance at case conferences where needed.
- Keep written records of children and young people’s welfare and protection concerns, even where there is no need to refer the matter immediately. These are to be kept confidentially in accordance with The Foundation’s Data Protection Policy.
- Ensure safe recruitment practices are always followed. This includes obtaining Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) certificates for any new staff and ensuring they are renewed at least every three years.
- Ensure that all employees provide references from previous employers.
- Ensure staff and volunteers understand their responsibilities for safer working practices.
- Ensure that any allegations against Foundation members of staff or volunteers, with a child and young person’s
protection aspect, are dealt with urgently, with concerns about staff and volunteers to be reported to the designated safeguarding officer.
- Ensure that all other Bath Rugby Foundation policies which have a safeguarding element (e.g. health and safety; SEN; Data Protection; Behaviour) are all consistent with this policy and with each other and where appropriate make cross-reference to this policy.
- Ensure all staff and volunteers receive and sign for a copy of this policy.
These practices and actions are prohibited by Bath Rugby Foundation and all staff and volunteers are trained on what defines ‘inappropriate behaviour’ towards children and young people in our care.
All members of staff and volunteers must never:
- Be inappropriate or have unnecessary physical contact with children and young people.
- Participate in any dynamic contact games or training with children and young people.
- Work alone with a child and/or young person.
- Consume alcohol whilst responsible for children and young people.
- Provide alcohol, drugs or other harmful substances to children and young people or allowing its supply.
- Smoke in the presence of children and young people.
- Have an intimate or sexual relationship with any child and young person developed as a result of being in a position of trust, including making sexually explicit comments or sharing sexually explicit material.
- Use inappropriate language or allow children and young people to use inappropriate language
- Allow allegations by children and young people to go unchallenged, unrecorded or not acted upon.
- Depart the school, activity centre or rendezvous point until the safe collection of all children and young people.
- Cause an individual to lose self esteem by embarrassing, humiliating or undermining the individual.
- Treat some children or young people more favourably than others
Positions of Trust
All Foundation staff and volunteers who work with children and young people are in a position of trust which has been invested in them by parents, the referring provider and the child and young person. This relationship can be described as one in which the Foundation staff member or volunteer is in a position of power and influence by virtue of their position. Having an intimate or sexual relationship with children and young people under 18 is unlawful, even where there is apparent consent from the young person. A consensual sexual relationship between a Foundation staff member or volunteer in a position of trust with a young person under 18 is contrary to the policy and procedures of Bath Rugby Foundation and will be subject to disciplinary procedures.
Foundation staff and volunteers must not develop a physical or emotionally dependant relationship with children and young people.
All those within Bath Rugby Foundation have a duty to raise concerns about the behaviour of any staff member of Bath Rugby Foundation, volunteers, outside contractors and anyone in a position of trust with children and young people.
Support to children and young people at risk
We recognise that children and young people who are abused or witness violence may find it difficult to develop a sense of self worth. They may feel helplessness, humiliation and some sense of blame. Bath Rugby Foundation may be the only stable, secure and predictable element in the lives of children and young people at risk. When participating in Bath Rugby Foundation activities their behaviour may be challenging and defiant or they may be withdrawn. The Foundation will endeavour to support children and young people through:
- Content of the activities
- The Bath Rugby Foundation ethos which promotes a positive, supportive and secure environment and gives children and young people a sense of being valued.
- Bath Rugby Foundation’s code of conduct ensures that the children and young people know that some behaviour is unacceptable, but they are valued and not to be blamed for any abuse which has occurred.
Consistency of Policies
This policy should be read alongside the following other Bath Rugby Foundation policies.
The responsibility of reviewing and maintaining this policy is Caryl Thomas, Bath Rugby Foundation’s Designated Safeguarding Lead. This policy will be reviewed annually.
Start date of policy: 1st September 2015
Last review date: 1st April 2018
Date of next review: 1st April 2019
The Key principles of the RFU Safeguarding Policy are:
- The welfare of children and young people are, and must always be, paramount to any other considerations.
- All participants regardless of age, gender, ability or disability, race, faith, culture, size, shape, language or sexual identity have the right to protection from abuse or harm.
- All allegations or suspicions of abuse, neglect, harm and poor practice will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly, fairly and appropriately.
- Working in partnership with other organisations, statutory agencies, parents, carers, young person and young people is essential for the welfare of children and young people.
- Children and young people have a right to expect support, and personal and social development delivered by an appropriately recruited, vetted and managed person in relation to their participation in rugby union, whether they are playing, volunteering or officiating in the community or professional areas of the sport.
For full details of the RFU Safeguarding Policy can be found here: http://www.englandrugby.com/governancesafeguarding/policy-and-guidance
Employee & Volunteer Declaration
I declare that I have received, read and understood this Child protection and safeguarding children and young people policy.
I agree to adhering to this policy at all times when participating in any Bath Rugby Foundation activities.