England Sports Group Safeguarding Policy

January 2017

England Sports Group is committed to guarantee that we do everything possible to ensure children are safe whilst coming to our courses and camps. This policy applies to all coaches, including directors of sport, or anyone working on behalf of the England Sports Group.

 The purpose of this policy:

  • To protect children and young people who receive coaching through ESG.
  • To provide coaches with the overarching principles that guide our approach to safeguarding and child protection.

 We recognise that:

  • The welfare of the child is paramount, as enshrined in the Children Act 1989.
  • All children, regardless of age, disability, gender, racial heritage, religious belief, sexual orientation, or identity, have the right to equal protection from all types of harm and abuse.
  • Some children are additionally vulnerable because of the impact of previous experience, their level of dependency, communication needs or other issues.
  • Working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers, and other agencies is essential in promoting young people’s welfare.

We will seek to keep children and young people safe by:

  • Valuing them, listening to, and respecting them.
  • Appointing a Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO) for children and young people.
  • Adopting child protection and safeguarding practices through procedures and a code of conduct for all the coaching teams.

 We ensure that the following happens with our coaching team:

  • Coaches are DBS Checked
  • Reference Checks are made on coaches
  • Coaches do an online Safeguarding Course when they start with us.
  • Yearly safeguarding training is done at our holiday camp coaches induction days.
  • Coaches read our Child Protection Policy & our Protecting yourself against Safeguarding Issues document. Then sign & date to confirm this.

The role of an ESG coach is one of great responsibility and is expected to behave as if they were a school teacher. The guidelines within this booklet are to:

 *  Increase awareness of the different forms of abuse.

 *  Present the responsibilities, of each coach to protect all children in their care/classes/camps/clubs.

 * Outline a code of conduct for coaches working with children

What is child abuse?

The Children Act 1989 defines children as those under the age of 18 and is concerned with the protection of children from any form of abuse. There are five recognised forms of child abuse.

  • Physical

Physical abuse is when a child suffers some form of physical injury e.g. bone breaks, burns or scalds, which are not the result of an accident. Some signs of physical abuse may be visible, but injuries may be covered by clothing. Some children may find it hard to explain injuries and be reluctant to remove clothing in warm weather, as injuries will be visible.

  • Emotional

Emotional abuse is the result of a child receiving little attention, but could also occur from being made to feel inadequate by remarks made by parents or other adults. A change in behaviour by a child, which is abrupt or gradual, can be a characteristic of emotional abuse. Speech may be affected and the child may develop nervous behaviour. In tennis, the indicators are that the child loses interest in playing or avoids match situations due to the fear of verbal abuse, which may follow.

  • Neglect

A child failing to attain the development expected for the age can indicate neglect. It can be long term and so is important to watch out for both physical and behavioural signs. If a child is badly cared for, they may lack friends because of their appearance and they may arrive late for coaching sessions, with no sign of parental or adult support.

  • Sexual

Sexual abuse occurs when a child is involved in sexual acts against their will. It may also take the form of involving the child in pornographic material such as magazines or videos. The adult will threaten the child not to reveal what is happening and the child will often stay quiet, as they feel responsible and ashamed. The indicators of sexual abuse may be physical in terms of pain and/or changes in behaviour. 96% of abusers are in some way known to their victim, either being in a position of trust or an influential person.

  • Bullying

Bullying can be by another young person or another adult or a coach. This maybe physical, verbal, or emotional bullying or a combination of these. The person being bullied maybe weaker and possibly younger, but the outcome for them will be a very distressing situation.

  

The Responsibilities of an England Sports Group coach working with children


 1. To recognise signs of abuse and to take any necessary action to help the child

They’re maybe several signs that child abuse is taking place. It could some signs of physical or behavioural change in a child or from something the child says, or by something another person says. It is important to be aware and vigilant, and to deal with the fact in an objective manner.

If the child indicates that they want to talk, then it is important to follow the following principles: 

  • Stay calm and re-assure the child

  • For a child to disclose abuse takes great courage, but explain that you will need to contact other professionals who will be able to give the help which is needed

  • You must listen to what the child says and record what has been said as soon as possible, recording the exact words as spoken by the child.

  • Then report it to your Director of coaching who in turn will report it to the County Child Protection Officer.

  • It is very important not to tell anyone else about the complaint until you have discussed it with the County Child Protection Officer.

 2. To ensure that behaviour when working with children, cannot be called into question

As an ESG coach you have a duty to protect children from harm. You should also be aware of the impact of your words and actions on young players. It is important to ensure that your verbal and non-verbal communication with all players is positive.

You have a duty to prevent physical injury and your training should always be very objective ensuring the programmes are appropriate to individual players in terms of their age, ability, and physical development.

Any behaviour, word, or actions, which could be construed by others as sexual in nature are inappropriate and will be viewed with serious concern.


 England Sports Group Code of Conduct for working with children

Those working with children in sport should:

 * be professional and maintain the highest standards of personal behaviour at all times.

 * be aware of situations which can be misconstrued by others, for example, if the coach is alone with a child in the clubhouse, changing room, or similar place, they are open to the possibility of allegations.

 * be vigilant and aware of how actions can be misinterpreted.

 * not appear to favour or show interest in one child more than another.

 * be very aware that physically handling a player, perhaps to develop a game skill such as the backhand swing, can be misconstrued by an observer or even the player. Explain to the player what they will be shown.

 * be aware of your language at all times and never use inapropriate language. 

 * design and use training methods and training programmes which are wholly appropriate to the individual player.

 * ensure that, you are not alone when working with young players on an individual basis. If this is unavoidable then the parents should be made aware of the situation for the sake of the coach.

 * conduct all dealings with children in a public environment in full view of others, in order for all behaviour to be observed.

 * report any concerns within the area of child protection (physical, emotional, sexual or neglect) in confidence and without delay, to the Child Protection Officer.

 * not, at any time, discuss an allegation or suspicion with another person, other than the police, before the Child Protection Officer has been contacted.

 * when reporting an allegation or suspicion, record information, including relevant details (This includes the nature of the allegation, background information of the parties involved, the period which the allegation relates to and the degree to which the information is known to be fact rather than opinion or hearsay).

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