Safeguarding in the North Midlands
On all occasions the RFU and North Midlands RFU consider the welfare of the child paramount.
Children are the lifeblood of the game and it is crucial that they are cared for in the correct manner. Any player under the age of 18 is classed as a child and should be respected as such.
The RFU Safeguarding Policy Guidance & Procedures sets out the key principles as well as providing best practice guidance. Everyone shares the responsibility for safeguarding and, therefore, this policy and guidance will be both relevant and useful for all those involved in creating safe environments in rugby union whether as a parent, coach, spectator or club official.
To provide children with the best possible experiences and opportunities in rugby union, it is imperative that everyone operates within an accepted ethical framework and demonstrates exemplary behaviour. This not only ensures the game makes a positive contribution to the development of children, safeguards them and promotes their welfare but also protects all personnel from allegations of abuse or poor practice.
North Midlands RFU responsibilities –
The role of the North Midlands Safeguarding Manager includes the following:
- To aid Club Safeguarding Officers.
- Support clubs to produce a Safeguarding Policy.
- Monitor implementation of Safeguarding Policies and procedures.
- To ensure the DBS disclosure processes are implemented.
- Have a formal role on relevant committees within North Midlands.
- To ensure all reported cases are reported to the RFU and to advise clubs on the management of reported cases after consultation with the RFU
The North Midlands Safeguarding Manager is: –
Judith Phelps: Mobile: 07773 326439 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
There are also 3 Assistant Safeguarding Managers
Michelle Butt: Mobile: 07773 328645 email: email@example.com
Deb Coles: Mobile: 07818 447297 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Clive Haley: Mobile: 07884 235790 email: email@example.com
Club Responsibilities –
ALL clubs with Junior players (U18), should have the following minimum procedures in place
- A named Safeguarding Officer who is easily contactable;
- DBS checks carried out on all adults who engage in regulated activities with Junior players;
- A Safeguarding Policy and related procedures adopted and implemented.
Safeguarding Policies and Procedures
The following links will take you to documents which will provide help and guidance to formulate club safeguarding policies and procedures.
Club Safeguarding policy template can be found here.
Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)
The RFU is committed to ensuring that all children enjoy rugby union in a safe and enjoyable environment. The RFU requires any individual engaged in a Regulated Activity to undertake a Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) check through their club in order to work with children in accordance with the RFURegulation21
All relevant information about RFU DBS can found here:
Reporting An Incident
If you have any concerns about a child contact your Club Safeguarding Officer or one of the North Midlands Safeguarding team in the first instance, who will be able to advise you further.
An Initial Issue Concern/Reporting Form should be completed when you have any concerns relating to the behaviour of any child or adult involved or spectating at your club. These may include general concerns about a child’s welfare, concerns about bullying or poor practice, suspicions or allegations of misconduct or allegations of abuse.
If any of the above are not available or are not sure what to do contact either the NSPCC 24-hour freephone helpline (0808 800 5000) or you may leave a message on the RFU Safeguarding Line (0208 831 6655) and a member of the Safeguarding Team will respond. Alternatively, you can email: firstname.lastname@example.org
To ensure the highest level of safeguarding in English rugby, and to support its numerous volunteers, the RFU offers two safeguarding courses which can be run at clubs.
Play It Safe
This course is for any volunteer or coach at a club who is working with or has responsibility for children
To run a course at your club please contact Clive Haley (contact details above) and provide 2 or 3 alternative dates. The course has to be run either on a night when no one else is using the club or in a room that can be closed off for privacy. The RFU require a 6-week lead in so please give Clive plenty of notice
Although the In Touch course is specifically targeted at Club Safeguarding Officers, in order for them to complete their training as specified in Regulation 21, we encourage any club official to attend this course to familiarize themselves with the scope of the role.
Participants can book onto courses here;
Finally, please remember, if we all consider that the welfare of the child is paramount – using best practices in our game, we are also helping protect adults from unfounded allegations.
Judith Phelps – North Midlands Safeguarding Manager