The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has released guidance specifically for sports organisations highlighting the new aspects of Working together to safeguard children which may have implications for them.
Sports organisation have been included for the first time within the revised Working together to safeguarding children 2018. Sports organisations, within this document, are listed as relevant agencies. This means that local sports organisations may now be called upon to join safeguarding partners in their formal arrangements, and if so are required to comply.
In most instances, the relevant agency is likely to be an organisation which is large enough to support local strategic safeguarding plans and developments e.g. county sports partnerships (CSPs), leisure providers or perhaps some larger professional sports clubs.
In order to fulfill their responsibilities in relation to safeguarding and child protection cases all sports providers should be aware of forthcoming changes in local statutory safeguarding arrangements.
The role of national sports organisations (e.g. NGBs) will be to support and advise local clubs and providers in the event of them being approached as a ‘relevant agency’, and to provide them with a level of information about these changes they consider appropriate.
The roles of CSPs and other more strategic local sports organisations may include responding to a request to become a ‘relevant agency’ and collaborate with the safeguarding partners work, as well as to provide advice and support to local clubs or providers on this issue.
If you have any questions after reading the guidance, contact your national governing body who should be able to support you.