The English Amateur Billiards Association: Child Protection Policy
EABA CPP 001 Rev. D 19-12-2007
Child Protection Policy, Policy Statement & Code of Practise
E.A.B.A. Child Protection Policy
This policy is available on the E.A.B.A. web site and all students and parents should make themselves aware of its contents. Coaches or supervisors who have contact with children should make sure that they comply with the policy and seek further guidance/training if required.
All sporting organisations, which make provisions for children and young people, have a responsibility to ensure that:
The welfare of the child is paramount;
All children, whatever their age, culture, disability, gender, language, racial origin, religious beliefs and/or sexual identity have the right to protection from abuse;
All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately;
All staff (paid/unpaid) working in a sport have a responsibility to report concerns to the appropriate officer.
1.0 Policy Statement
Billiards as a sport and pastime has a duty of care to safeguard all children involved in Billiards from harm. All children have a right to protection, and the needs of disabled children and others who may be particularly vulnerable must be taken into account.
The E.A.B.A. will ensure the safety of all children involved in our sport through adherence to this Child Protection Policy, Good Practise Guidelines and Code of Practice adopted by the E.A.B.A. Management Committee 30th October 2007,
A child is defined as less than 18 years of age: The Child Protection Act 1989.
2.0 Policy Aims
The aim of the E.A.B.A. Child Protection Policy is to promote good practice:
1. Providing children and young people with appropriate safety and protection whilst in the care of Billiards coaches and supervisors who are registered members of the English Amateur Billiards Association.
2. Allow all coaches/supervisors/volunteers to make informed and confident responses to specific child protection issues.
3.0 Promoting Good Practise with Young People
Child abuse, particularly sexual abuse, can arouse strong emotions from those facing such a situation. Abuse can occur within many situations including the home, school and the sporting environment. It is a fact of life that some individuals will actively seek employment or voluntary work with young people in order to harm them.
A coach, instructor, teacher, official or volunteer may have regular contact with young people and be an important link in identifying cases where a young person needs protection.
All suspicious cases of poor practise should be reported to the E.A.B.A. and or relevant authorities following the guidelines in this document.
When a child has been subjected to child abuse outside the sporting environment, sport can play a crucial role in improving the child’s self esteem. In such instances the E.A.B.A. must work with the appropriate agencies to ensure that the child receives the required support.
3.2 Good Practice Guidelines
All personnel should be encouraged to demonstrate exemplary behaviour in order to protect themselves from false allegations. The following are common sense examples of how to create a positive culture and climate within the game of English Billiards.
3.3 Good Practice Means:
1. Always working in an open environment (e.g. avoiding private or unobserved situations and encouraging an open environment i.e. no secrets).
2. Treating all young people/disabled adults equally, and with respect and dignity.
3. Always putting the welfare of each young person first e.g. before w/oning.
4. Maintaining a safe and appropriate distance with players (e.g. it is not appropriate to have an intimate relationship with a child or to share a room with them).
5. Building balanced relationships based on mutual trust, which empowers children to share in the decision making process.
6. Making sport fun, enjoyable and promoting fair play.
7. Ensuring that if any form of manual/physical support is required, it should be provided openly and according to guidelines provide by the Coach Education Programme.
8. Keeping up to date with technical skills, qualifications and insurance in sport.
9. Involving parents/carers wherever possible (e.g. for the responsibility of their children in the changing rooms). If groups have to be supervised in the changing rooms, always ensure parents/parents/teachers/coaches/officials work in pairs.
10. Ensuring that if mixed teams are taken away, they should always be accompanied by a male and female member of staff. (N.B. however, same gender abuse can occur).
11. Ensuring that at tournaments or residential events, adults should not enter children’s rooms or invite children into their rooms.
12. Being an excellent role model – this includes not smoking, drinking alcohol, or gambling when supervising or in the close company of young people.
13. Giving enthusiastic and constructive feedback rather than negative criticism.
14. Recognising the development needs and capacity of young people and disabled adults avoiding excessive training or competition and not pushing them against their will.
15. Securing parental consent to act in loco parentis, if the need arises to give permission for the administration of emergency first aid and/or other medical treatment.
16. Keep a written record of any injury that occurs, along with the details of any treatment given.
17. Requesting written parental consent if clubs or officials are required to transport young people in their cars.
3.4 Practises to be Avoided
The followiog should be avoided except in emergencies. If cases arise where these situations are unavoidable they should only occur with the full knowledge and consent of someone in charge in the club or the child’s parent. For example, a child sustains an injury and needs to go to hospital, or a parent fails to arrive to pick a child up at the end of a session;
Avoid spending excessive amounts of time alone with children away from others.
Avoid taking children to your home where they will be alone with you.
3.5 Practices never to be sanctioned
1. Engage in rough, physical or sexually provocative games, including horseplay;
2. Share a room with a child;
3. Allow or engage in any form of inappropriate touching;
4. Allow children to use inappropriate language unchallenged
5. Make sexually suggestive comments to a child, even in fun;
6. Reduce a child to tears as a form of control;
7. Allow allegations made by a child to go unchallenged, unrecorded, or not acted upon;
8. Do things of a personal nature for children or disabled adults that they can do for themselves;
9. Invite or allow children to stay with you at your home unsupervised.
NB. It may sometimes be necessary for staff or volunteers to do things of a personal nature for children, e.g. if they are young or are disabled. These tasks should only be carried out with the full understanding and consent of parents and the players. If a person is fully dependent on you, talk with him/her about what you are doing and give choices where possible. This is particularly so if you are involved in any dressing or undressing of outer clothing or where there is physical contact, lifting/assisting to carry out particular activities. Avoid taking on the responsibility for tasks for which you are not appropriately trained.
3.5 If any of the following occur you should report this immediately to another colleague and record the incident. You should also ensure that the parents of the child are told
1. If you accidentally hurt a player.
2. If he/she seems distressed in any manner.
3. If a player seems to be sexually aroused by your manner.
4. If a player misunderstands or misinterprets something you have done.
4.0 Recruitment and selection of Coaches/Officials and volunteers
The E.A.B.A. recognises that anyone can have the potential to abuse children in some way and that all reasonable steps are taken to ensure unsuitable people are prevented from working with children. The recruitment, selection and Training of Coaches/Officials and Volunteers is outlined in the related document EABA RT 001 – Recruitment and Training of Coaches/Officials and Volunteers – Code of Practice
5.0 Responding to suspicion or allegations
It is not the responsibility of anyone holding coaching or official status within the E.A.B.A. to take responsibility or to decide whether or not that child abuse has taken place. However, there is a responsibility to act on any concerns through contact with the appropriate authorities.
The E.A.B.A. assures all E.A.B.A. members who are engaged as officially recognised coaches/officials that it will fully support and protect anyone, who in good faith reports his/her concern that a colleague is, or may be, abusing a child.
Where there is a complaint against a member of the E.A.B.A. there may be three types of investigation;
1. A criminal investigation
2. A child protection investigation
3. A disciplinary or misconduct investigation
6.0 Action and Code of Practice
It is EABA policy to support its Child Protection Policy Aims by using the following Code of Practice when required, by the EABA, its Officials, Coaches and Volunteers.
6.1 Concerns about poor practice
1. Any suspicion that a child has been abused by either a member of staff or a volunteer will be reported to the EABA Child Protection Officer, who will take such steps as considered necessary to ensure the safety of the child in question and any other child who may be at risk.
2. The EABA Child Protection Officer will refer the allegation to the social services department which may involve the police, or go directly to the police if out-of-hours.
3. The parents or carers of the child will be contacted as soon as possible following advice from the social services department.
4. If the EABA Child Protection Officer is the subject of the suspicion/allegation, the report must be made to the EABA Executive Committee or in their absence the Child Protection Officer who will refer the allegation to social services.
5. The alleged abuser (and parents if the alleged abuser is a child).
Every effort will be made to ensure that confidentiality is maintained for all concerned. Information will be handled and disseminated on a need to know basis only.
This includes the following people:
1. The Child Protection Officer
2. The parents of the person who is alleged to have been abused
3. The person making the allegation
4. Social services/police
5. The E.A.B.A. Child Protection Officer
6. The alleged abuser (and parents if the alleged abuser is a child).
7. Seek social services advice on who should approach the alleged abuser.
8. Information should be stored in a secure place with limited access to designated people, in line with data protection laws (e.g. that information is accurate, regularly updated, relevant and secure).
6.3 Internal enquiries and suspension
The EABA Child Protection Officer will make an immediate decision about whether any individual accused of abuse should be temporarily suspended pending further police and social services inquiries.
1. Irrespective of the findings of the social services or police inquiries the EABA Disciplinary Committee will assess all individual cases to decide whether a member of staff or volunteer can be reinstated and how this can be sensitively handled. This may be a difficult decision, particularly where there is insufficient evidence to uphold any action by the police. In such cases, the EABA Disciplinary Committee must reach a decision based upon the available information, which could suggest that on a balance of probability, it is more likely than not that the allegation is true. The welfare of the child should remain of paramount importance throughout.
6.4 Support to deal with the aftermath of abuse
Consideration should be given to the kind of support that children, parents and members of staff may need. Use of helplines, support groups and open meetings will maintain an open culture and help the healing process. The British Association for Counselling Directory is available from The British Association for Counselling, 1 Regent Place, Rugby CV21 2PJ, Tel: 01788 550899, Fax: 01788 562189, Email: email@example.com
Consideration should be given to what kind of support may be appropriate for the alleged perpetrator.
6.5 Allegations of previous abuse
Allegations of abuse may be made some time after the event (eg by an adult who was abused as a child or by a member of staff who is still currently working with children).
Where such an allegation is made, the EABA will follow the procedures as detailed above and report the matter to the social services or the police. This is because other children, either within or outside sport, may be at risk from this person.
Anyone who has a previous criminal conviction for offences related to abuse is automatically excluded from working with children. This is reinforced by the details of the Protection of Children Act 1999.
6.6 Action if bullying is suspected
If bullying is suspected, the same procedure should be followed as set out in ‘Responding to suspicions or allegations’ above.
Action to help the victim and prevent bullying in sport:
1. Take all signs of bullying very seriously.
2. Encourage all children to speak and share their concerns (It is believed that up to 12 children per year commit suicide as a result of bullying, so if anyone talks about or threatens suicide, seek professional help immediately). Help the victim to speak out and tell the person in charge or someone in authority.
3. Investigate all allegations and take action to ensure the victim is safe. Speak with the victim and the bully(ies) separately.
4. Reassure the victim that you can be trusted and will help them, although you cannot promise to tell no one else.
5. Keep records of what is said (what happened, by whom, when).
6. Report any concerns to the Child Protection Officer or the club (wherever the bullying is occurring).
6.7 Action towards the bully(ies):
1. Talk with the bully(ies), explain the situation, and try to get the bully(ies) to understand the consequences of their behaviour. Seek an apology to the victim(s).
2. Inform the bully(ies)’s parents.
3. Insist on the return of ‘borrowed’ items and that the bully(ies) compensate the victim.
4. Provide support for the victim’s coach.
5. Impose sanctions as necessary.
6. Encourage and support the bully(ies) to change behaviour.
7. Hold meetings with the families to report on progress.
8. Inform all organisation members of action taken.
9. Keep a written record of action taken.
6.8 Concerns outside the immediate sporting environment (eg a parent or carer):
1. Report your concerns to the Child Protection Officer, who should contact social services or the police as soon as possible.
2. See 7.0 below for the information social services or the police will need.
3. If the Child Protection Officer is not available, the person being told of or discovering the abuse should contact social services or the police immediately.
4. Social services and the Child Protection Officer will decide how to involve the parents/carers.
5. The Child Protection Officer should also report the incident to the EABA Management Committee.
6. Maintain confidentiality on a need to know basis only.
7. See 7,0 below regarding information needed for social services.
7.0 Information for social services or the police about suspected abuse:
To ensure that this information is as helpful as possible, a detailed record should always be made at the time of the disclosure/concern, which should include the following:
1. The child’s name, age and date of birth of the child.
2. The child’s home address and telephone number.
3. Whether or not the person making the report is expressing their own concerns or those of someone else.
4. The nature of the allegation. Include dates, times, any special factors and other relevant information.
5. Make a clear distinction between what is fact, opinion or hearsay.
6. A description of any visible bruising or other injuries. Also any indirect signs, such as behavioural changes.
7. Details of witnesses to the incidents.
8. The child’s account, if it can be given, of what has happened and how any bruising or other injuries occurred.
9. Have the parents been contacted?
10. If so, what has been said?
11. Has anyone else been consulted? If so, record details.
12. If the child was not the person who reported the incident, has the child been spoken to? If so, what was said?
13. Has anyone been alleged to be the abuser? Record details.
14. Where possible referral to the police or social services should be confirmed in writing within 24 hours and the name of the contact who took the referral should be recorded. If you are worried about sharing concerns about abuse with a senior colleague, you can contact social services or the police direct, or the NSPCC Child Protection Helpline on 0808 800 5000, or Childline on 0800 1111.
On behalf of EABA, we, the undersigned, will oversee the implementation of the Child Protection Policy and take all necessary steps to ensure it is adhered to.
The copyright for the content of the Child Protection Policy is owned by NSPCC Child Protection in Sport Unit (CPSU), which has given permission to Sport England for its reproduction.
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