AJFC Child Safety Policy

Ashwood Junior Football Club Child Safe Policy

Written By: Jo Reid / Dale Wain
Approved By: Paul Hattersley (President)
Endorsed By: AJFC Committee, Feb 26th 2018
Date for Review: 2020 or as required

This policy was written to demonstrate the strong commitment of the committee, staff and volunteers of the Ashwood Junior Football Club (AJFC) to child safety and to provide an outline of the policies and practices the Club has developed to keep everyone safe from any harm, including abuse.

Commitment to Child Safety
The Ashwood Junior Football Club is committed to promoting and protecting the safety and well-being of children and young people in our care who access activities, programs, services or facilities for which the AJFC is responsible for.

All children who are a part of the Club have a right to feel and be safe. The welfare of the children in our care will always be our first priority and the Club has a zero tolerance to child abuse.

Application of this Policy
This policy was developed by the Club and in collaboration with volunteers and the children who use our services and their parents.

This policy applies to all individuals involved in our organisation (paid and volunteer) including, but not limited to:
• Administrators
• Coaches
• Officials
• Participants
• Parents
• Spectators.

All of the people to which this policy applies have a role and responsibility in relation to child protection. They must all:

• understand the indicators and risks of child abuse;
• appropriately act on any concerns raised by children; and
• understand and follow all applicable laws in relation to the protection of children and reporting or management of child safety concerns.

Child Abuse
Child abuse can take a broad range of forms including physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional or psychological abuse and neglect. People to whom this policy applies need to be aware that child abuse can occur whenever there is actual or potential harm to a child, and these are circumstances that the Club is committed to reducing the risk of occurrence.

Children’s Rights to Safety and Participation
The Club encourages children to express their views about their safety. We listen to their suggestions, especially on matters that directly affect them. We actively encourage all children who use our services to ‘have a say’ about things that are important to them.

We teach children about what they can do if they feel unsafe. We listen to and act on any concerns children, their parents, any affiliated members, community members raise with us.
Ways we as a club will encourage feedback and provide information about Child Safety
• Players consultative forum
• Surveys
• Displaying of the CSO contact details

Valuing Diversity
We value diversity and do not tolerate any discriminatory practices. To achieve this we:
• promote the cultural safety, participation and empowerment of Aboriginal children and their families;
• promote the cultural safety, participation and empowerment of children from culturally and/or linguistically diverse backgrounds and their families;
• welcome children with a disability and their families and act to promote their participation;
• seek appropriate volunteers and affiliated embers from diverse cultural backgrounds.

Recruiting staff and volunteers
The Club takes the following steps to ensure best practice standards in the recruitment and screening of staff and volunteers:
• Interview and conduct referee checks on all staff and volunteers
• Require Working with Children Checks for relevant positions.
• Our commitment to Child Safety and our screening requirements are included in all advertisements and as part of the induction process for new staff or volunteers.

On all club role applications the following will be in the Adverts

Ashwood Junior Football Club's Commitment to Safeguarding Children & Young People
The AJFC is committed to promoting and protecting the safety and well-being of children and young people in our care who access activities, programs, services or facilities for which the AJFC is responsible for.

Please note a successful appointment in this position is subject to a satisfactory suitability to work with children screening. The successful candidate(s) is/are required to possess a valid ‘working with children’s check aligning this to AJFC and the SMJFL . The AFL has extensive procedures and checks in place to protect children and young people in our organisation.
On all club role applications the following will be in the Position Descriptions

Safeguarding Children and Young People
 To provide a welcoming and safe environment for children and young people and ensure interactions with children and young people are positive and safe.
 To adhere to the organisation’s practice and behavioural guidelines or code of conduct in relation to the appropriate treatment of children.
 Provide adequate care and supervision of children and young people in your charge.
 Report any suspicions, concerns, allegations or disclosures of alleged abuse to management.
 Requirement to maintain valid working with children check documentation.
 Requirement to report to management any relevant criminal charges or convictions during the course of your employment/volunteering.

Supporting staff and volunteers
The Club seeks to attract and retain the best staff and volunteers. We provide support and supervision so people feel valued, respected and fairly treated. We have developed a Code of Conduct to provide guidance to our staff and volunteers, all of whom receive training on the requirements of the Code.

All Committee members, coaches and team managers are to complete the SMJFL online Child Safety course. https://learning.ausport.gov.au/

Please refer to the AJFC Code of Conduct policy.

Reporting a child safety concern or complaint
The Club has appointed Joanne Reid as Child Safety Officer with the specific responsibility for responding to any complaints or concerns made by staff, volunteers, parents or children. Joanne can be contacted by schlegel@optusnet.com.au Mobile: 0413 161 625

Please refer to the AJFC Complaints and Grievances policy

Risk Management
We recognise the importance of a risk management approach to minimising the potential for child abuse or harm to occur and use this to inform our policy, procedures and activity planning. In addition to general occupational health and safety risks, we proactively manage risks of abuse to our children. To reduce the risk of child abuse occurring, adults to whom this policy applies should avoid direct, unsupervised contact with children. For example, this should be a consideration when:

• using change room facilities;
• using accommodation or overnight stays;
• travel; or
• physical contact when coaching or managing children.

Please refer to the AJFC Risk Management policy and process.

Reviewing this policy
This policy will be reviewed every two years or as required and we undertake to seek views, comments and suggestions from children, parents, carers, staff and volunteers involved in the Club.

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