All Sussex Clubs must have a Safeguarding Policy and must appoint a Safeguarding Officer, whose contact details must be kept up to date on RugbyFirst - the RFU database. It is important that all Players under 18 years of age are protected and kept safe from physical, sexual or emotional harm while they are with the Club's Coaches, Helpers and other Volunteers.
Safeguarding Officer: Jackie Coleman
There may, however, be an increased risk within many sports, including Rugby Union, for abuse to occur which does not necessarily fit into these categories. The unique culture and traditions of Rugby, along with so-called stereotypical behaviour, whilst common to many team sports, may give rise to unacceptable behaviour leading to situations where abuse may occur or coaches and/or young players are at increased risk.
Whilst there are many ways in which the welfare of young players can be safeguarded, this document does not go into detail and further guidance can be sought from the 'RFU Child and Young Player Protection Policy'
You are advised to become familiar with the ways in which you and your club can:
- Understand what child abuse means
- Ensure good practice in the coaching of young players
- Provide a safe environment for young people
- Recognise abuse and provide a structure to deal sympathetically with concern
Safeguarding the welfare of our young players is paramount. As coaches and volunteers we have a moral and possibly a legal responsibility to provide the highest possible standard or care when we welcome young people into the game of Rugby Union.