Matlock Athletic Club Protection Policy for Young and Vulnerable People

Matlock Athletic Club acknowledges its responsibility to safeguard the welfare of every young and vulnerable person who has been entrusted to its care and is committed to working to provide a safe environment for all of its members.

A child or young person is anyone under the age of 18 engaged in any running club activity. A vulnerable adult is defined as any person aged 18 or over who;

- Is in need of assistance by reason of mental, physical or learning disability, age or illness and who;
- Is unable to take care of him or herself or unable to protect him or herself against significant harm or serious exploitation which may be occasioned by the act or omissions of other people.

2 The key principles of Matlock Athletic Clubs Protection Policy for Young and Vulnerable People are that:

- The welfare of the young or vulnerable person is the most important consideration;
- All young and vulnerable people must be protected from abuse regardless of their gender, sexual orientation, disability, racial origin or religious beliefs;
- All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to rapidly and in an appropriate manner;
- Working in partnership with other organisations, young and vulnerable people and their parents/carers is vital.

3 We recognise that every young or vulnerable person who participates in our sport should be able to take part in a safe environment and be protected from poor practice and abuse. Matlock Athletic Club  acknowledges that this is the responsibility of every adult involved in our club.

4 Matlock Athletic Club has a role to play in protecting the welfare of all young and vulnerable persons by guarding them from physical, sexual or emotional harm and from neglect or bullying. It is accepted that the Association of Running Club Regulations apply to everyone in our sport whether in a paid or voluntary capacity. This applies whether you are a volunteer, helper, coach, or club official.

With reference to the Association of Running Club's Protection Policy for Young and Vulnerable People and the best Practice Guidelines for recruiting volunteers, we will:
- Meet or interview the applicant
- Require a CRB Unit Enhanced Disclosure where appropriate

All coaches with direct access to young and vulnerable people will be required to complete a CRB/ DBS Enhanced Disclosure. If there are concerns regarding an individual who is already involved or who has approached us to become part of Matlock Athletic Club guidance will be sought from the Association of Running Clubs. It is accepted that the Association of Running Clubs will consider the relevance and significance of the information obtained via the CRB Unit and that all decisions will be made in the best interests of young and vulnerable people.

It is accepted that Matlock Athletic Club aims to prevent people with a history of relevant and significant offending from having contact with young and vulnerable people and training with young or vulnerable people. This is to prevent direct sexual or physical harm to young or vulnerable people and to minimise the risk of “grooming” within running.

5 Matlock Athletic Club supports the Association of Running Club's Whistle-blowing Policy.  Any adult or young person with concerns about a colleague can whistle-blow by writing to the Secretary, Association of Running Clubs, 19 Sheephouse Green, Wotton, Dorking, Surrey RH5 6QW or by telephoning the Secretary on 01306 888886 or by going direct to the Police, Social Services or the NSPCC.  Matlock Athletic Club  encourages everyone to know about it and utilise it if necessary.

6 Matlock Athletic Club has appointed two Club Welfare Officers (CWO) in line with the Association of Running Club's role profile. The post holder will or has attended a suitable course to provide training. The CWO is the first point of contact for all club members and parents/ carers regarding concerns for the welfare of any young or vulnerable person. They liaise directly with the Association of Running Club's Child Protection Officer and will be familiar with the procedures for referring any concerns. They will also play a proactive role in increasing an awareness of poor practice and abuse amongst club members.

7 We acknowledge and endorse the Association of Running Club's identification of bullying as a category of abuse. Bullying of any kind is not acceptable at our club. If bullying does occur, all runners or parents/ carers should be able to inform and know that incidents will be dealt with promptly. Incidents need to be reported to the CWO or member of the committee or alternatively in cases of serious bullying contact the Association of Running Clubs CPO.

8 Codes of conduct for young people, parents/ carers and coaches have been implemented by Matlock Athletic Club . In order to validate these codes of conduct the club has clear sanctions to deal with any misconduct at club level and acknowledges the possibility of potential sanctions which may be implemented by the Association of Running Clubs in more serious circumstances. All prospective members under 18 years of age will be informed of these codes.

9 Further advice on Child and Vulnerable Adult Protection matters can be obtained from the NSPCC Child Protection 24-Hour Helpline.

Updated January 2018

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