Child and Youth Protection Procedures Policy
1. Code of Conduct for Interacting with Children and Youth
In addition to the Southport Golf Club’s Code of Conduct, the Club has adopted the following specific Code of Conduct for engaging and interacting with children and youth.
Volunteers, coaches, staff, Members, players and participants, Committee Members, Officials, parents, spectators, sponsors, visitors and invited guests will be asked to:
• Use appropriate language when engaging and/or interacting with children and youth.
• Not make inappropriate physical contact with any children or youth.
• If coaching, instructing or officiating, maintain professional relationships with children and youth within the Club and treat them with the same respect as would be given to adults.
• Not tolerate bullying within the Club, either between or amongst children and youth, or from adults towards children and youth.
• Place the safety and wellbeing of children and youth above all else.
• Set a good example for children and youth within the Club by the way you conduct yourself and through your own behaviour.
2. Recruitment, training and management of volunteers and staff
Any person nominated by the General Manager to recruit staff & volunteers, or any person engaging in recruitment activities, will require all such staff and volunteers to implement the SGC’s Child Youth Protection Policy in all recruitment activities.
The Club will;
• Create an awareness among staff, Club Members and the wider community of the volunteering opportunities available, the benefits and personal satisfaction of volunteering.
• Individuals undertaking recruitment activities are subject to conditions within the Club’s constitution at all times.
The SGC Club will ensure that new staff & volunteers working with children will be inducted into the Club through a clear induction process. The induction process
will provide staff and volunteers with the tools needed to provide a safe, friendly and welcoming environment for children and youth, the Club’s Child and Youth Protection Policy, its procedures and code(s) of conduct, their rights and responsibilities, harm and disclosure procedures, reporting and grievance procedures and the roles of Management and other key personnel and staff.
Training for staff and volunteers is for the purpose of enhancing skills and knowledge to enable role effectiveness, reduce risks and the potential for exposure to risks together with ensuring a safe, friendly and welcoming environment for children and youth is supported and encouraged. All staff and volunteers are required to be vigilant in seeking to identify and deal with any inappropriate behavior.
The Club may use online training materials which help staff and volunteers to identify and manage risks with ongoing training provided for all Club staff and volunteers. The Club aims to support and encourage improvement from continuous learning. Training will be planned and may be offered informally (through on-the-job supervision, a buddy system or self-paced learning) or formally (through Tafe, First Aid or industry accreditation).
3. Procedures for handling disclosures and suspicions of harm
When there is a disclosure or suspicion of harm, the SGC will respond professionally and in the best interests of the child or youth and will be dealt with promptly, seriously, sensitively and confidentially.
Upon receiving a disclosure of harm, the expected response is to:
• Stay calm; not react critically.
• Believe the child or youth.
• Reassure the child or youth that the disclosure or suspicion will be dealt with properly and professionally.
• Ask non-leading questions to gather adequate information.
• Ask only enough questions to determine the need to report the matter to the Dept. of Communities, Child Safety Services or the Police.
• Follow Club procedure in reporting the disclosure or suspicion of harm to Management for appropriate action.
Following a disclosure or suspicion of harm the SGC will determine whether the allegation should be reported to the Department of Communities, Child Safety Services or the Police. As soon as possible, all alleged incidents will be reported to the President and/or General manager (or in their absence, those acting in their role) for further enquiry. All alleged incidents should be responded to by Management within 24 hours. If the alleged incident is of an illegal or criminal nature the Club will respond immediately by reporting the alleged incident/disclosure immediately to the Police and/or the Department of Communities and Child Safety Services. Once the matter has been referred to the Police, the Club will conduct no further investigation. Strict confidentiality, impartiality, fair and due process must be maintained and adhered to at all times.
4. Managing breaches of the Child and Youth Protection Risk Policy
The Southport Golf Club will review all allegations or breaches of the Child and Youth Protection Policy and will take action to minimise the risk of further breaches.
If, or when, an allegation is made that a breach occurs the Club will:
• Advise all persons concerned what to expect and the process to take place.
• Provide all persons concerned the opportunity to give an account of the event.
• Record the details of the breach and the statements of all parties concerned.
• Ensure the matters of the breach, discussions of the breach and the outcome are kept confidential.
• Ensure an appropriate and suitable outcome.
• Review current policies and procedures to determine necessary potential amendments to the Policy.
When all information has been gathered, the Club will decide the outcome which can include:
• Persons having been identified as breaching the Child Protection Policy will be supported, advised and guided though the relevant risk management protocol and procedure for thorough understanding.
• Provision of closer supervision.
• Further education and training.
• Mediation between all persons involved in the breach.
• Disciplinary actions if deemed necessary as a result of the breach review.
• Develop new procedures and protocols if necessary.
5. Compliance with Blue Card legislation
The Southport Golf Club will comply with Blue Card legislation by ensuring that all staff and volunteers working with children and youth will undergo the Working With Children Check and obtain a positive notice Blue Card (unless exempt to do so).
Staff and volunteers engaged by the Club who do not undergo a Working With Children Check or hold a current positive notice Blue Card will not be permitted to work with children under the age of 18.
Applications for a positive notice Blue Card will be made in conjunction with the Club to Qld Dept Justice and Attorney-General and recorded on the Blue Card register. If an application for a positive notice Blue Card is rejected, the Club is legally obligated to refuse the applicant involvement with children and youth.
Current positive notice Blue Card’s are to be held prior to working with children and youth. The Club will maintain a confidential register containing the personal details and Blue Card details of staff and volunteers.
This register includes detail regarding:
• When the person applied and/or the date of issue of the positive notice and Blue Card
• The expiry date of the Blue Card, and
• The renewal date (this will be set at least 30 business days before expiry to allow staff and volunteers to continue in their roles).
Staff and volunteers must submit a renewal application before the expiry date of their Blue Card to continue working with children and youth.
The Club will maintain a written record of the following information for all staff and volunteers:
• Whether a negative notice has been issued
• Any change in status to a Blue Card (e.g. a change in police information, the positive notice and Blue Card is cancelled or suspended)
• When there is a change in police information, when the Club informed Blue Card Services of the change, and
• Any changes of personal information of staff member or volunteer including the date they informed Blue Card Services.
• Where a staff member or volunteer ceases to be engaged.
6. High risk activities and special events
The Southport Golf Club in its intent to welcome children and youth in inclusive participation acknowledges certain environmental factors that are considered high risk for young people. The Club extends its culture of inclusion and protection to participants engaged in competition from other Clubs and activities from external and community organisations.
The Club will manage risks through:
• Ensuring that parents and carers are well informed to enable decisions regarding travel and attendance.
• Developing standard set procedures to identify risks associated with travel and attendance at venues other than our Club.
• Requiring event organisers to understand the required commitment to providing a safe environment through risk management and assessment procedures and practices.
• Not arranging transport for juniors to travel to golf events. This will be arranged by parents.
• A travel plan and contact information and procedures will be communicated to everyone involved.
7. Strategies for communication and support
A copy of the Club’s Child and Youth Protection Policy will be provided to all current volunteers and staff and to all new staff and volunteers upon commencement. A copy will be located on the noticeboard in the clubhouse and on the Club’s website.
The Club will appoint a Member Protection Information Officer (MPIO), to perform the function of communicating to volunteers, members,staff, parents and
caregivers, coaches and official’s information regarding Blue Card legislation, the monitoring of Member Protection Updates, maintaining a Blue Card register and organise Blue Card applications. The MPIO will act as a first point of contact for advice, support, information and enquiries concerning procedures, policy and protocol for disclosures of harm or potential for risk. The Club will ensure that immediately upon commencement the MPIO will receive adequate and appropriate training and education.
8. Rights and expectations of parents and caregivers
Parents and caregivers place their children into sport and sporting activities to build character, develop skills, learn teamwork and sportsmanship and to have fun. Parents and caregivers assume, and should expect, their children will be provided with a safe, friendly and welcoming environment. Parents and caregivers have an awareness of the potential for harassment and abuse in sport and understand their children can potentially be exposed to risk of unsafe practices.
The Club understands this and acknowledges its role in a professional capacity to be responsible for minimising and limiting the potential for harm. The Club aims and intends to work in partnership with parents and caregivers to ensure children and youth experience a positive sport environment free from risk and/or harm.
The Club, parents and caregivers will do this by:
• Maintaining open and transparent communication.
• Communication between parents and caregivers and coaches and club officials will be conducted freely, without prejudice and/or recriminations.
• Voice objection courteously using language and attitude which contributes to a positive and safe environment.
• Report incidents of aggression, offensive language and inappropriate actions to the General Manager.
• Engaging in positive actions, language and behaviour only to set a positive example to children and youth.
• Encourage all children and youth to Play By The Rules.
• Treat all persons with respect and courtesy.
• Encourage and support all attempts for children and youth to learn, train and compete to their personal bests.
9. Understand and commit to the Club’s code(s) of conduct. Examples of behaviour and conduct to minimise harm
Demonstrating a skill or technique
Physical contact should only be made to aid coaching and/or instruction after a verbal explanation is provided first. Permission for contact must be gained in advance.
Congratulating a junior and positive encouragement should be provided verbally and in a group environment. Comforting a junior should use positive language.
Being alone with a junior
Coaching and/or instruction should always be conducted in an open environment in sight of at least one other adult.
Parent drop-off and collection
A designated procedure for the arrival and collection of juniors should be pre- arranged. If a parent/carer is not present at the designated collection time, which shall be no later than the closing of the Golf Shop, the junior must wait in the clubhouse until the person collecting them arrives.
Photography and social media
Parents and carers are required to provide written consent for their children to be photographed and/or filmed, or clubs using social media to promote junior events and happenings, are to use prescribed club consent forms.
Smoking and alcohol
Strict adherence to smoking, alcohol and banned substances legislation is to be practised and promoted.