Parkwyddn Junior football Club Safeguarding Whistleblowing Policy
This policy covers every individual involved in activity carried out under the jurisdiction of Parkwyddn JFC including players, coaches, match officials and club representatives and volunteers.
It is often the case that players, coaches, officials, parents, carers or team followers are the first to realise that a child’s health, safety and welfare are under threat. However, they may not express their concerns because they feel that speaking up would be too difficult to handle. It may also be that they fear harassment or victimization.
In these circumstances, it may be easier for them to ignore the concern rather than report what may just be a suspicion of poor practice. Parkwyddn JFC urges anyone to come forward and voice those concerns or suspicions and commits to supporting those who raise matters of concern being raised without fear of victimization, subsequent discrimination or disadvantage.
The policy is intended to encourage and enable individuals to raise serious concerns within Parkwyddn JFC, in the first instance, rather than overlooking a problem or “blowing the whistle” outside. It is in the interest of all concerned that disclosure of potential abuse or irregularities are dealt with properly, quickly and discreetly. This includes the interests of all persons involved with Parkwyddn, but especially the person making the complaint, the person who is the subject of the complaint and, most importantly, the person or persons who are or who may be at risk.
Parkwyddn JFC recognises that raising a concern and reporting an allegation can be a difficult decision to make through fear of reprisals from those responsible for the alleged poor practice or abuse. If an individual believes what they say is or may be true, then they should have no reason to fear reporting their concern as a duty of care to the child, young person or vulnerable adult concerned.
Where concerns are raised in good faith, Parkwyddn JFC will offer its full support to the whistle blower and will not tolerate any resulting bullying, harassment or victimisation whatsoever. Should this occur, any perpetrators will be dealt with under Parkwyddn JFC’s Disciplinary Policy and Procedures, which may result in possible expulsion from the club.
The club will do its utmost to protect the confidentiality of a whistle blower if they do not want their identity to be disclosed. However, it must be acknowledged that any subsequent investigation into an allegation, the whistle blower may be needed provide a statement to form part of the evidence.
If the investigation process requires the whistle blower to be identified, or it becomes apparent that the whistle blower will be identified, then notice will be given to them by the Child welfare Officer (CWO), to which person(s) or organisation(s) the identity disclosure will be made. They will then be given the opportunity to discuss any likely consequences.
Raising a Concern or Making an Allegation
In the first instance, and suspicions or concerns should be brought to the attention of Parkwyddn’s Child Welfare Officer (CWO) either verbally or in writing.
At the time of this policy being written Parkwyddn’s Child Welfare Officer is Karen Harwood who can be contacted via email at [email protected]
The concern needs to be as specific as possible, including the reason for the concern, an outline of the issue, the history or background and any names, dates and locations where possible.
The earlier an individual expresses a concern, the easier it is for someone to take prompt and efficient action. Although the whistle blower is not expected to prove the truth of an allegation, they will need to demonstrate to the club’s CWO that there are sufficient grounds for their concern.
The Club encourages the whistle-blower to put their name to a concern or allegation. Anonymous concerns or allegations are much less powerful and are, therefore, much harder to prove.
It is important to emphasize that any concern or allegation received anonymously will still be considered and an investigation will be undertaken at the discretion of the DSO who will assess the seriousness of the concern, the credibility of the concern, and the likelihood of confirming the allegation from attributable sources or factual records.
Untrue or Unproven Allegations
If an investigation finds that the concerns or allegations made by a whistle-blower are untrue or have not been substantiated, but were reported in good faith, then no action will be taken against the whistle-blower. However, if it is established a concern or allegation was made with malicious or frivolous intent or for personal gain, disciplinary action may be taken against the whistle-blower. In any such cases, Parkwyddn Junior Football Club’s Disciplinary Policy / Procedure will apply.
Responses and Outcomes to Concerns and Allegations
The CWO or other relevant person(s), body(ies) or organisation(s) will respond accordingly to all concerns and allegations that are raised with communications either by email, telephone or in person as is deemed appropriate, and will liaise with the whistle-blower as necessary until the matter is concluded.
The Investigation Process
All investigations will be undertaken by the CWO, who may be supported by an appropriate member of Parkwyddn JFC’s management committee. However, should you feel that you have not received a satisfactory response or conclusion to your concern you can approach the following people / organisations:
- calling 0800 169 1863 and asking for the FA’s safeguarding team, or via email on [email protected].
- You can go direct to the police or Salford Safe Guarding Children’s Board The Bridge Partnership on 0161 603 4500 or via email [email protected]
- Child protection in sport unit via [email protected] or the NSPCC Helpline via 0800 800 5000 or by emailing [email protected]