1. POLICY AND CONTEXT
The United Nations Convention on the rights of the child sets out in one body all the rights which children up to the age of 18 can expect to have. Everyone has human rights including children but because children are not adults they are more likely to have their rights ignored. The UK government has been bound by the Convention since 1991 and it is important that all adults who work with children and young people in the context of sport understand and subscribe to the principals, which have their foundation in the Convention. Additionally the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 is the legislation, which seeks to protect children, and young people from harm and promote their welfare.
Best interests: When adults or organisations make decision which affect children they must always think first about what would be best for the child.
Protection from Violence and Harmful Treatment: Children have the right to be protected from all forms of violence. They must be kept safe from harm. They must be protected from all forms of violence. They must be kept safe from harm. They must be given proper care by those looking after them.
Leisure: Every child is entitled to rest and play and to have the chance to join in a wide range of activities.
Protection from Exploitation: The government must protect children from sexual abuse.
THE CHILDREN (SCOTLAND) ACT 1995 sets out a legal framework for the upholding of these rights and provide a basis for local authorities to safeguard children from harm and abuse. The essential principles of the Act number six. But for the purposes of this statement the following will be most relevant in the context of Jedforest Rugby Club:
Each child has the right to be treated as an individual
Each child who can form a view on matters affecting him or her has the right to express those views if he or she so wishes.
Each child has the right to protection from all forms of abuse, neglect or exploitation.
Of the three main themes, which support these principles, the following will be most relevant in the context of Jedforest Rugby Club:
The welfare of the child is the paramount consideration when his or her needs are considered.
2. POLICY STATEMENT
Jedforest Rugby Club subscribes to the United Nations Charter on the Rights of the Child. The Club expects that its members will recognise the duty of care, which is owed to all children, and young people who play rugby at Jedforest either as junior members or as visitors. All adults who are employed by the club or are involved with children and young people have a duty to prevent physical, emotional or sexual abuse against them. All staff and coaches are required to subscribe to this Policy Statement.
3. GUIDELINES FOR SAFE PRACTICE
These guidelines are intended to protect children and the adults with whom they come into contact.
Protection of the Child: Allegations made by children about abuse must be taken seriously. It is unlikely that at the time of a disclosure there will be evidence to support an allegation by a child against an adult. Nonetheless the allegation must be taken seriously and reported to the Child Protection Co-ordinator for the club. In situation of allegations of abuse it is essential that children are listened to and supported. It is the welfare of the child, which is paramount at all times and particularly at this stage. The Child Protection Co-ordinator will take advice about necessary steps required to have the allegation investigated. This will normally involve consultation with the Child Protection Unit of the Social Work Department.
Protection of the Adult: In a circumstance where an allegation is made against an employee of the club or a volunteer coach, following advice from the Child Protection Unit a decision will be made as to whether or not the adult should be suspended from duties pending an investigation. Equally it is important that the adult is treated fairly and that his or her rights are respected.
Planning for Safety: The club will undertake to minimise risk to children and young people in its care and in pursuit of this undertaking coaches should not meet with young people individually away from the club setting. Parents will want to be assured that their children are not put at a potential risk by being in on-to-one situations inappropriately.
Where an adult believes that a child appears to be receiving exceptional treatment by being unduly favoured or harshly treated, this should be pointed out either to the adult involved or to the Child Protection Co-ordinator. The matter should be satisfactorily resolved once a suspicion has been raised either by way of explanation or by modification of behaviour.
4. INDEPENDENT ADVOCACY
The club will appoint an independent advocate who can be available for children to talk to. The name of the independent advocate is posted on the club notice board. Additionally contact details for Childline Scotland are posted on the notice board.
5. THE CHILD PROTECTION CO-ORDINATOR
The role of the Child Protection Co-ordinator is to act as a reference point for anyone who needs to discuss an allegation of abuse. The Co-ordinator is the point of contact with the Child Protection Unit and if necessary the Police.
The Child Protection Co-ordinator is also responsible for liaison with and ensuring that staff and voluntary coaches are familiar with this statement of policy and guidelines that adequate training is available to adults to understand the context of child abuse and how to best protect children.
The Co-ordinator conducts the administrative procedures required for processing information on staff, coaches and organisers.
6. THE ROLE OF THE VOLUNTEER IN YOUTH RUGBY
Adults who give of their time freely are greatly appreciated by members of Jedforest Rugby Club. Without them giving their expertise and enthusiasm to young people there will be no up and coming generation of young people for the club in the future. But the Club recognises that some adults seek out situations in which they are able to exploit young people.
In order to avoid this danger Jedforest Rugby Club will always be explicit with volunteers who work with children about what their roles and responsibilities will be. This will take the form of a written statement of agreement between the club and adult.
7. APPOINTMENT PROCEDURES
This procedure is intended to protect children from potential harm. It is not intended to discriminate against individuals who volunteer to work with young people in youth rugby.
Any adult who applies to work with young people will be asked to provide a reference from someone who has firsthand knowledge of them including where appropriate knowledge or previous work with children.
The club will seek independent verification of a volunteer’s background through the Scottish Criminal Records Office.
8. IN THE EVENT OF AN ALLEGATION OF ABUSE
It is the responsibility of all adults in the club to prevent harm to children. This includes a duty to report any abuse discovered or suspected.
The child Protection Co-ordinator must be informed in the event of an allegation or suspicion.
The independent advocate will be advised by the Child Protection Co-ordinator who will also seek advice from the Social Work Department’s Child Protection Unit.
JEDFOREST RUGBY CLUB WILL SEEK TO ENSURE THAT THE WELFARE OF THE CHILD IS HELD PARAMOUNT AT ALL TIMES.
Jedburgh Rugby bodies:
Jedforest Rugby Club: Paul Cranston [email protected] 07850767116
Jed-Thistle Rugby Club: Mick Hewitt [email protected] 07775890076
Jed-Thistle Under 16: Kevin Barrie [email protected] 07790144317
Jedburgh Grammar School U16, U15, S2 and S1: Scott Henderson
[email protected] 07921579413
Jedforest Mini Rugby: Neil Glen [email protected] 07971409339
Child Protection Officer: Fraser Mortimer [email protected] 07725358610
SRU Child Protection Policy - http://www.scottishrugby.org/regulations/child-protection/child-protection-policy.