12:32 15 February 2012
By Latics Staff
Safeguarding children & vulnerable adults
Wigan Athletic Football Club acknowledges and accepts it has a responsibility for the well being and safety of all children and vulnerable adults who are under the club's care or utilising its facilities. It is the duty of all adults working at Wigan Athletic to safeguard the welfare of children and vulnerable adults by creating an environment that protects then from harm.
The wellbeing of children and vulnerable adults is paramount for all staff and accordingly, they must make themselves aware of the football club's Safeguarding Children Policy and Vulnerable Adults Policy. Where appropriate, the following guidelines will be supplemented by in-service training and additional guidance.
Contents of this Articles:-
(Click the links to jump to section)
Rules & Regulations
Aims & Key Principals
Safeguarding Children & Vulnerable Adults
Recruitment & Disclosure
Criminal Records Bureau
Gifts & Favouritism
Use of Images
Guidelines in the Event of Concern
Responding to a Report or Suspicion
Recording Allegations or Suspicions
You can jump back to this menu where you see the "Back top Top" links
RULES & REGULATIONS
Wigan Athletic Football Club is governed by the rules and regulations set out in the 1989 Children Act, Premier League Rules Sections O and U and FA Safeguarding Children Rules.
The Football Club is fully committed to ensuring that the best practice recommended by these bodies is employed throughout all areas of business.
Wigan Athletic Football Club also has a responsibility to maintain regular dialogue with the Local Safeguarding Children Board.
Back top Top
A "Child" is defined as anyone under the age of 18.
A "Vulnerable Adult" is defined as anyone aged 18 or over who is or may be unable to take care of him or herself, or unable to protect him or herself against significant harm or exploitation.
''CSO' = Children's Services Officer 'CSO'
'SO or DP' = Safeguarding Officer or Designated Person
Back top Top
AIMS & KEY PRINCIPLES
The aims of Wigan Athletic Football Club's Safeguarding Children Policy and & Vulnerable Adults Policy are:
To safeguard all children and vulnerable adults who interact with Wigan Athletic Football Club.
To demonstrate best practice in the area of safeguarding children and vulnerable adults.
To develop a positive and pro-active welfare programme to enable all children and vulnerable adults to participate in an enjoyable and safe environment.
To promote high ethical standards throughout.
The key principles underpinning this policy are:
The child's and/or vulnerable adult's welfare is, and must always be, the paramount consideration.
All children and vulnerable adults have a right to be protected from abuse regardless of their age, gender, disability, culture, language, racial origin, religious beliefs or sexual identity.
All allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to efficiently and appropriately.
To encourage parents and other members of the child and/or vulnerable adult's family to be involved in a relationship with Wigan Athletic Football Club.
To ensure that coaches, parents and other adults who come in contact with children and vulnerable adults provide good role models of behaviour.
Back top Top
SAFEGUARDING CHILDREN & VULNERABLE ADULTS
Safeguarding Children & Vulnerable Adults Programme
Wigan Athletic Football Club has an ongoing commitment to employing a programme of activities which cover all areas of the business. The programme will regularly be reviewed and updated according to any needs that may be identified.
Children's Services Officer 'CSO's / Designated Persons
Wigan Athletic Football Club has a Head of Safeguarding who has overall responsibility for the safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults, and a number of Safeguarding Officers who work within various areas of the business. The Safeguarding Officers or Designated Persons have special responsibilities and are the focal point for safeguarding children and vulnerable adults in their nominated area.
Anybody with concern about a child's or vulnerable adult's welfare should contact the Head of Safeguarding - details can be found at the end of this policy.
Back top Top
RECRUITMENT & DISCLOSURE
As part of Wigan Athletic Football Club's recruitment and selection process, offers of employment to positions which involve working with children and vulnerable adults are subject to a satisfactory CRB disclosure and appropriate references. See below for details of Wigan Athletic Football Club's CRB procedures. Guidelines on ISA requirements are held with the Head of Safeguarding. These are under review by the Government as at August 2010 and updates will be disseminated by The Premier League.
All coaching staff working in direct contact with children shall be required to complete the FA workshop on Safeguarding Children. Details of those satisfactorily completing this course are retained by the Centre of Excellence Manager or Head of Safeguarding.
Health and Safety
WIGAN ATHLETIC's Health and Safety Policy gives guidance to those whose roles involve working with children and vulnerable adults. Where a child or vulnerable adult is involved, a risk assessment must take account of their particular vulnerabilities. The risk assessment should set out what arrangements are in place for their care and supervision, examples of such risk assessments can be found in the Premier League Rules.
A Staff Briefing Note giving guidance to all WIGAN ATHLETIC employees is provided at induction. Whenever possible staff should avoid situations where they are in one to one contact with children. When physical intervention is necessary to restore safety, restraint should not continue any longer than is absolutely necessary.
Back top Top
CRIMINAL RECORDS BUREAU
WIGAN ATHLETIC is registered, with the Criminal Records Bureau ("CRB"). The CRB provides a disclosure service for organisations. CRB disclosures enable employers to undertake more thorough recruitment and selection procedures for positions which involve working with children and vulnerable adults.
PROCESS FOR CRIMINAL RECORDS BUREAU CHECKING
All staff who are offered a position which involves working with children and vulnerable adults will be required to undertake a CRB Disclosure. All employment offers are subject to the outcome of the screening process and when applicable, this is set out in their Offer of Employment.
Wigan Athletic Football Club is committed to the equal opportunities of its staff and therefore if a positive Disclosure is received it will not result in an instant dismissal from employment.
Should a positive Disclosure be received, a risk assessment will be carried out by the Head of Safeguarding and the Chief Executive to assess the information contained within the Disclosure certificate. The member of staff may also be asked to attend an interview prior to an employment decision being made.
New Appointments who already have a Disclosure Certificate
If a new member of staff has been CRB checked by a previous employer, Wigan Athletic Football Club will still insist that person should undertake another check. The only exception to the rule is a current FA CRB certificate. There is no other portability contract. The original current (less than six months') FA CRB Disclosure certificate must be shown to the Head of Safeguarding, and it must be dated within six months of the employee's start date at the Football Club. It must also be for a similar role of that which the person has been appointed. Wigan Athletic Football Club will apply for its own CRB check and ISA registration, in line with current legislation and Football League guidance.
The Role of the Head of Safeguarding in safe recruitment procedures
New legislation has been introduced since October 2009, which requires Wigan Athletic Football Club to CRB check potential staff, and the member of staff cannot be employed until the Football Club receives the CRB disclosure. It is in breach of current legislation if the person begins work BEFORE receipt of the CRB disclosure. The Head of Safeguarding will advise all staff on the new legislation ISA, vetting and barring and any other changes in current legislation through email/training or other means of communication. Always refer to the Head of Safeguarding in the first instance for clarification on 'working with children'.
Priority is being given to those who come into contact with children and vulnerable adults. All staff who have one to one contact with children and vulnerable adults will be CRB checked and eventually ISA registered in line with current Government legislative requirements.
Temporary Staff and External Consultants
Wigan Athletic Football Club will ensure that all temporary staff and external consultants sign a self declaration form and will not have unsupervised access to children and vulnerable adults during their employment with the Football Club.
Wigan Athletic Football Club does not permit scouts to attend its Academy games programme unless advance authorisation is given by a senior member of the Academy department.
Back top Top
GIFTS & FAVOURITISM
Staff should take care that they do not accept any gift that might be construed as a bribe by others, or lead the giver to expect preferential treatment.
Wigan Athletic Football Club recognises that there are occasions when children, vulnerable adults or parents wish to pass small tokens of appreciation to staff, for example at Christmas or as a "thank you", and this is acceptable.
However, it is unacceptable to receive gifts on a regular basis or of any significant value as this may be misinterpreted by others. Staff should report any gifts received to their line manager.
Similarly, it is not permitted for staff to give personal gifts to children or vulnerable adults. This could be misinterpreted as a gesture either to bribe, or to single out the young person. It might also be perceived that a "favour" of some kind is expected in return.
Any reward given to a child or vulnerable adult must first be agreed with the staff member's line manager as part of a structured reward system and not based on favouritism.
Back top Top
USE OF IMAGES
Wigan Athletic Football Club takes its guidance on the use of images from guidelines issued by the FA. All photographs are taken by Wigan Athletic Football Club representatives who have been briefed by the Football Club's designated person responsible for the activity being photographed.
Before taking photographs of children and young people, parental consent is sought in writing at the start of the season or prior to the event. Parents/carers are responsible for informing Wigan Athletic Football Club of any change of circumstances within the Season which may affect consent.
Parents and carers will be informed of how the image will be used. Wigan Athletic Football club will not allow an image to be used for something other than that for which it was initially agreed.
All children and young people featured in Wigan Athletic Football Club's publications will be appropriately dressed.
Were possible, the image will focus on the activity taking place and not a specific child/young person.
Where appropriate, images represent the broad range of youngsters participating safely in football.
Designated photographers will undertake a CRB check, and will be personally responsible for keeping up to date with the latest guidelines on the Use of Images policies from the FA. Wigan Athletic Football Club Identification should be worn at all times.
Children and young people who are under a court order will not have their images published in any Wigan Athletic Football Club document.
No images of children and young persons featured in Wigan Athletic publications will be accompanied by personal details such as their school or home address.
Recordings of children and young people for the purposes of legitimate coaching aids are only filmed by Wigan Athletic officials and are stored safely and securely at the Football Club's training ground.
Any instances of inappropriate images in football should be reported to the Head of Safeguarding.
Back top Top
GUIDELINES IN THE EVENT OF CONCERN
Although Wigan Athletic Football Club is committed to doing the utmost to safeguard children and vulnerable adults from harm there may be occasions when concern is raised over the treatment of a child or a vulnerable adult.
"Child abuse" and "neglect" are generic terms encompassing all ill treatment of children and vulnerable adults as well as cases where the standard of care does not adequately support the child or vulnerable adult's health or development. Children and vulnerable adults may be abused or suffer neglect through the infliction of harm, or through the failure to act to prevent harm. Abuse can occur in a family or an institutional or community setting. The perpetrator may or may not be known to the child or vulnerable adult.
Recognition - Signs of Abuse
There are five main forms of abuse identified as follows, should you have any concern that abuse is occurring you should contact a Wigan Athletic member of staff immediately. For the purposes of these definitions a "Child" also refers to a vulnerable adult.
Physical abuse may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer feigns the symptoms of, or deliberately causes ill health to a child whom they are looking after. A person might do this because they enjoy or need the attention they get through having a sick child. Physical abuse can be caused through omission or the failure to act to protect.
Sexual abuse involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, whether or not the child is aware of, or consents to, what is happening. The activities may involve physical contact, including penetrative acts such as rape, buggery or oral sex or non-penetrative acts such as fondling. Sexual abuse may also include non-contact activities, such as involving children in looking at, or in the production of, pornographic material or watching sexual activities, or encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways. Boys and girls can be sexually abused by males and/or females, by adults and by other young people. This includes people from all different walks of life.
Neglect is the persistent failure to meet a child's basic physical and/or psychological needs. It may involve a parent or carer failing to provide adequate food, shelter and clothing, failing to protect a child from physical harm or danger, or the failure to ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment. It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child's basic emotional needs.
Abuse Emotional abuse is the persistent emotional ill treatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child's emotional development. It may involve making a child feel or believe that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person.
Bullying is not always easy to define and can take many forms. The three main types are: physical, verbal and emotional.
For more detailed information on the five main forms of abuse refer to The Football Association Child Protection Procedures and Practices Handbook. The information above has been taken from this source and can be found on the FA website. Please also refer to the Head of Safeguarding for guidance.
Back top Top
RESPONDING TO A REPORT OR SUSPICION
Wherever possible Wigan Athletic's Head of Safeguarding should be contacted as early as possible. However, it is recognised that an individual may need to respond to a situation immediately. With this in mind, the following guidelines offer help and support in responding to abuse or a suspicion of abuse:
treat any allegations extremely seriously and act at all times towards the child or vulnerable adult as if you believe what they are saying.
tell the child or vulnerable adult they are right to tell you.
reassure them that they are not to blame.
be honest about your own position, who you have to tell and why.
tell the child or vulnerable adult what you are doing and when, and keep them up to date with what is happening.
take further action - you may be the only person in a position to prevent future abuse.
write down everything said and what was done.
seek medical attention if necessary.
inform parents/carers unless there is suspicion of their involvement
make promises you cannot keep.
interrogate the child or vulnerable adult - it is not your job to carry out an investigation - this will be up to the police and social services, who have experience in this.
cast doubt on what the child or vulnerable adult has told you, don't interrupt or change the subject.
say anything that makes the child or vulnerable adult feel responsible for the abuse.
Back top Top
DOING NOTHING IS NOT AN OPTION; IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO ACT.
Make sure you inform the Head of Safeguarding immediately, they will know how to follow this up and where to go for further advice.
Back top Top
RECORDING ALLEGATIONS OR SUSPICIONS
The Designated Person will immediately report any allegation to the Head of Safeguarding, who will ask for a written factual statement from the person making the report.
If the report involves an allegation about another member of staff, that person will also be asked to write a brief report. Any statement made by the child or vulnerable adult should be reported in their own words. These reports should be confined to facts and should not include any opinion, interpretation or judgement.
Wigan Athletic Football Club will ensure that any child or vulnerable adult concerned is immediately removed from any possible risk of harm.
Investigations into possible abuse will require careful management. The Head of Safeguarding should seek the advice of The Premier League Head of Safeguarding, The Football Association Safeguarding Children Team, Local Safeguarding Children Board, or the Police before setting up an internal inquiry and take their advice on informing the child or vulnerable adult's parents. In any case of suspected abuse, as soon as the local Social Services Department has been informed, the Head of Safeguarding at Wigan Athletic must provide a report to the Head of Safeguarding at The Premier League, who will then inform the FA Safeguarding Team and inform Wigan Athletic's Chief Executive Officer.
There is always tension and caution around issues of confidentiality. The advice for all staff at Wigan Athletic Football Club is that no guarantee of confidentiality can be given to a child or vulnerable adult (although this does not necessarily mean that the parents of the young person have to be told).
A child or vulnerable adult should never be pressured to give information or show physical marks unless they do so willingly. If they chose to show markings, two members of staff should be present.
There are actions which staff have to and are obliged to take once we are aware of a problem. Undertakings of confidentiality should not be given either to the person making the allegations or to the person being interviewed. A matter is confidential on a need to know basis and nobody should have any reservations about referring any issue to Wigan Athletic Football Club's Head of Safeguarding. The key issue is that the welfare of the child or vulnerable adult is protected.
Back top Top
HR Manager/Head of Safeguarding
Wigan Athletic Football Club
Tel. 01942 774000 Ext 2305
Fax. 01942 770477
EXTERNAL CONTACT DETAILS
The Premier League
Head of Safeguarding
0207 864 9000
THE FA / NSPCC HELPLINE: 0808 800 5000 /
Textphone: 0800 056 0566