CHILD PROTECTION NEWS (October 2014)
Child Protection Officer -
Child Protection is important for all clubs within the District; a young person of the age of 14 is classed as an adult and is free to play adult hockey. Following the introduction of the Protection of Children Act there is an increased need for clubs to adopt and implement child protection policies and procedures. These are intended to ensure that hockey is a sport that provides a safe environment for young and vulnerable people and clubs are required to check and see if individuals are disqualified from working with children.
All volunteers and professionals who are employed by clubs to work with children are subject to these policies and procedures. They are also subject to disclosure checks under the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme to ensure that they are suitable for working with children.
Policies and procedure should provide:
A policy to follow;
Procedures for the recruitment of individuals who will work with children/young people;
The role of the Child Protection Officer;
Code of conduct;
Policy on bullying, photographing children, and use of the internet;
Procedure to respond to disclosure checks.
Child Protection in your club
The key to a club implementing policies is to identify an individual to act as the Child Protection Officer and lead the process. This individual needs to be aware of the process, the action to be taken and to be able to respond to tasks in a timely manner. There are a number of templates that can be downloaded from the Scottish hockey website (http://www.scottish-hockey.org.uk/clubs--schools/clubs--child-protection-.aspx) or from the East District website (http://east-hockey.org.uk/hockey/child_protection.htm). These should be adapted for use in your club.
Coaching Edinburgh runs specific workshops (Safeguarding & Protecting Children) that anyone who works with children should attend. Club CPOs should also attend the workshop. Details are available from the Coaching Edinburgh website (http://www.coachingedinburgh.co.uk/).
In Safe Hands: Club Child Protection Officer Workshop is run by sportscotland. Details are available on the Children 1st website (http://www.children1st.org.uk/services/148/in-safe-hands-club-child-protection-officer-workshop). Anyone new to the CPO role should attend this workshop.
The procedure for applying for Disclosure has now changed. In February 2011, the Government brought in the new Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme which includes several improvements to the previous scheme of Disclosure. The PVG scheme is still administered by Disclosure Scotland.
What is PVG?
For the majority of sports clubs/sports organisation/SGBs the PVG Scheme will relate to
work with children and young people and rarely will involve work with protected adults.
People doing certain types of work in Scotland, to be known as regulated work with children, young people and/or protected adults can apply to join the PVG Scheme e.g. sports coaches, team managers , child protection officers etc.
On first application for membership to the Scheme, checks will be carried out by Disclosure Scotland. Unless these checks uncover information which makes the applicant unsuitable to work with one or both of the above groups the applicant will become a Scheme Member.
It will be an offence for someone who is barred from regulated work to do or seek to do that type of regulated work. It will be an offence for an organisation to employ an individual in regulated work if they are barred, hence the need for scheme membership as part of the recruitment process.
1. If an individual will be carrying out regulated work with children within your club (or district) the first step is to complete a self declaration form. All those who have a disclosure check that is close to expiry will be written to by Scottish Hockey and asked to complete a self declaration form from their club or district CPO, and send it to Scottish Hockey.
2. Once the self declaration form is complete, post it to Scottish Hockey.
3. If eligible to join the PVG scheme, an 'Application to Join the PVG Scheme' Form will be posted to the individual along with a letter detailing how to complete the form.
4. Complete forms and post back to Scottish Hockey.
5. Scottish Hockey checks ID and that form is complete, and then sends to CRBS.
6. Individual and Scottish Hockey will be informed as to whether or not they have been accepted onto the PVG scheme as a scheme member.
• Scottish Hockey cannot send out PVG forms to CPOs to distribute, they will come direct from Scottish Hockey.
• During the first year of the PVG Scheme implementation, CRBS are only accepting the 'Application to join the PVG Scheme' forms. After this period, existing member forms will become available, in order to do a scheme record update. This will be for those who have already joined the PVG Scheme though a different organisation e.g. their workplace.
• If someone wishes to carry out regulated work with children at a club, and for a district, they will need to complete a club self-declaration form and a district self declaration form, but they will only need to join the PVG Scheme once. This is to ensure that the individual has signed up to abide by each organisation's code of code and child protection policy and procedures.
Sports clubs/organisations should ensure that they comply with the new Scheme by reviewing their policies and procedures to ensure that they are robust and act as an effective deterrent alongside the new Scheme.
This should include:
An effective recruitment & selection procedure:
• Detailed job/role descriptions
• Robust selection process including interview
• Identity checks
• Appropriate PVG Scheme Membership
An induction process:
• Review of the Code of Conduct
• Support and supervision
• Relevant Child Protection training
• Child Protection Policy/Procedure
• Grievance & Disciplinary procedure
• Health and Safety procedures
Finally it is recommended that you familiarise yourself with the Scottish Government’s
PVG information website: http://www.infoscotland.com/pvgscheme/.
Assessment of ‘regulated work’
The definition of ‘regulated work’ replaces but is different to the existing ‘child care position’ definition (while regulated work with children is presently defined as ‘childcare role’ under POCSA, it is likely that the vast majority of what were ‘childcare roles’ will fall into the new ‘regulated ‘ work category. However, it is up to the employer to determine which roles in sports clubs/sports organisation/SGBs are regulated work).
By way of a summary regulated work is defined by four basic principles:
1. It has to be work, (paid or unpaid) i.e. not simply an arrangement between friends/family
2. It has to be with either children/young people, (or protected adults)
3. It has to be part of normal duties i.e. the activity is reasonably anticipated and could appear on the person’s job description
4. The work has to include:
• caring for children/young people
• teaching, instructing, training or supervising children/young people
• being in sole charge of children/young people
• having unsupervised access to children/young people
Clearly many roles within sport for children will meet the regulated work criteria.
The role of managing a person in regulated work is also considered to meet the definition
of regulated work, e.g. a youth section convenor.
Reporting Child Protection Incidents
It is important to report any incidents as soon as possible. Please fill out the Incident Report Form with as much detail as you can and return this to me by email email@example.com
I will contact you, normally within 48 h to verify the details of the incident. I will determine the appropriate course of action and seek advice from appropriate bodies such as Children 1st if necessary. If appropriate, I will also involve Scottish Hockey.
Please note it is not necessary to inform Scottish Hockey in the first instance, all incidents should be reported directly to me.
Flow chart for reporting incidents
Clare Taylor (firstname.lastname@example.org)
East District CPO