Safeguarding

Introduction

We are fully committed to the welfare of juniors involved with squash in the county. As part of this commitment, we have established a Child Welfare Officer role. This officer’s primary task is to ensure that all squash activities carried out on behalf of the association are performed within a framework of child protection measures that match England Squash guidelines. A secondary role is to offer advice to clubs, leisure centres and coaches who work with juniors, so that they may also conform to England Squash child protection guidelines.

As a start, we suggest that all parents, guardians and coaches watch the following NSPCC video, as well as read our Policy Statement, Guidelines and Advice below:

Policy Statement

We are committed to creating and maintaining the safest possible environment for children and young people to enjoy playing squash. We do this by:

  • Appointing a Child Welfare Officer who is responsible for children and young people. The Child Welfare Officer will take specific responsibility for child safety and will act as the main point of contact for parents, children and outside agencies.
  • Recognising that all children and young people have the right to freedom from abuse.
  • Ensuring that all our coaches, officials and volunteers working with youngsters at county managed or sponsored events, are carefully selected, hold current Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) certificates (previously CRB), have submitted personal disclosure forms to England Squash via the county Child Welfare Officer and have attended an appropriate child protection course.
  • Responding swiftly and appropriately to all suspicions or allegations of abuse, by providing parents and children with the opportunity to voice any concerns they may have.
  • Ensuring access to confidential information is restricted to the person responsible for children and young people or the appropriate external authorities.

Guidance to Parents

If you have any concerns regarding the welfare of your child at any of our organised events, you should:

  • Immediately remove your child from the event.
  • Contact your Local Authority Safeguarding Officer and explain your concerns, copying in our Child Welfare Officer in all correspondence.
  • Immediately contact the Police if you believe a criminal act has taken place.
Our Child Welfare Officer is Desiree Schalkwyk – please contact Desiree if you need any guidance or have any issues you need to discuss.

England Squash Summary Guidelines and Links

For full details of England Squash’s stance on Child Protection issues please click here. Their guidelines cover such things as:

  • Reporting procedures and forms.
  • Coach and volunteer vetting procedures.
  • Code of conduct for coaches/volunteers, juniors, parents and referees.
  • Parental consent forms.
  • Welfare Officer role description.
  • Club/Leisure Centre/County policy statements.
  • Criminal Records Bureau policy statement.
  • Use of photographic and video images.

Under 18s Playing in Adult Teams

Recommended actions for Team Managers/Captains to take to protect the young player:

  • Talk to the junior and parent/guardian and establish whether they have any particular concerns about joining an adult group, for example changing with adults. If this were the case, suggest to the parents/guardians that the youngster changes in privacy first.
  • Notify the opposing team that you are including an under 18 player and ask them to respect this and behave accordingly.
  • Avoid one-on-one situations between an adult and a junior, in changing rooms and in transport to and from the match.
  • Recommend that the junior should wear protective goggles.
  • Ask the parent/guardian if they are prepared to be present throughout the match and provide transport.

Eye Protection

For county managed or sponsored junior tournaments, all participants who are under 19 years of age are required to wear protective goggles. England Squash guidelines for eye protection can be viewed on their website via this link.