Child and Vulnerable Adult Protection Policy

Policy Statement

It is Tynemouth Sailing Club policy to:

• Maintain its informal and friendly atmosphere.
• Ensure that children, young people (and vulnerable adults) enjoy the amenities and activities of the club and develop their sailing and social skills free from any form of harm.
• Ensure that Instructors, Volunteers and adult members enjoy the amenities and activities of the club without undue restriction.
• Encourage custom and practice which protects children from potential or actual physical, emotional or sexual abuse or neglect.
• Encourage custom and practice which protects adults from potential or actual accusations of abuse.
• Raise awareness of child protection matters and encourage due regard to be given to them by all.
• Investigate any allegations effectively and promptly and take appropriate action.
• Comply with relevant legislation (Children’s Act 1989) and take note of guidance.
• Co-operate fully with any enquiries by relevant authorities.

Definitions
    Child       Any person aged under 18 years old.

Vulnerable Adult Any person over 18 who by reason of physical or mental disability or social or emotional deprivation might be considered vulnerable.

Abuse In addition to self evident physical violence or sexual contact; Physical abuse may include requiring a child to attempt something beyond their strength or capability. It may also include excessive horseplay.
Emotional abuse may include constant or excessive criticism or sarcasm, or persistently and unduly ignoring a child.
Neglect may include undue and excessive exposure of a child to cold or risk of injury and may be by commission or omission.
Sexual abuse may include inappropriate touching which might take place in the course of instruction.
Abuse includes child to child abuse such as bullying as well as adult to child abuse.

Arrangements
    Vetting of Instructors and Volunteers

TSC is a small family club. The Training Principal, Senior Instructors and Instructors listed are all club members. We now require that any Instructor or volunteer working with children or venerable adults will undertake the RYA’s Fun and Safe Safeguarding training and with undertake a DBS check through the RYA.

All new instructors and volunteers who are to work with children will be required to undertake the same checks. The safeguarding officer for the sailing club is to be informed of any new volunteers and will facilitate their DBS checks through the RYA.

School staff or school volunteers who assist with their school sessions are not checked. The school are assumed to have carried out any appropriate checks.

Raising Concerns

Any child who feels they have been mistreated or harmed, any adult who believes they have witnessed mistreatment and anyone who has been accused of mistreating someone should talk to Sarah Kincaid in confidence as soon as possible. Sarah is the nominated “safeguarding officer” and has professional expertise in this area.
Allegations of significant harm to a child or young person may be referred to the Police. Such referral would normally be made by the child’s Parent or Guardian
but in exceptional circumstances may be made by the club.

Immediate Action

If Sarah is not immediately available, the concerns should be raised with the Senior Instructor in charge.

Follow up Action

Appropriate action will be decided. Action considered will include;

• Notification to parents
• Discussion with parents about referral to agencies
• Immediate notification to Police if necessary
• Action with regard to an accused club member
• Information to be provided to relevant authorities

Changing

Changing and showers are male/female segregated but not adult/child segregated. During club training activities there are separate times allocated for adult and child changing. Situations where a single adult is present with a child or children except their own should be avoided.

Children below the age of 9 are not normally included in training activities. (Exceptionally younger children may be included at the discretion of the Training Principal.) All children must be capable of getting changed independently unless disabled. Adult help/contact (except e.g for drysuit zips) should be unnecessary and should only be given in the case of the disabled by a parent/guardian or by an established carer.

Outside Groups

If children from schools or other organisations are being given training changing is under the supervision of staff from the organisation. TSC Instructors/volunteers will change before arrival/after departure of the group or in a separate area. (e.g. upstairs lounge.)

Emergencies

In some circumstances a child may require assistance. E.g. if injured or suffering from hypothermia. In such a situation when a parent/guardian is not available and assistance is given or the child is kept under observation for their safety ( e.g help or supervision to have a warm shower and change ) then 2 adults must be present at all times.

Do s and Don’ts for Instructors and Volunteers

• Do not spend time alone with a child or children out of sight of other adults.
• Do not engage in rough, physical or sexually provocative games including horseplay.
• Do not engage in or allow inappropriate touching of any form.
• Do not make inappropriate comments to a child, even in fun and no not allow children to use inappropriate language unchallenged.
• Never do things of a personal nature for a child that they can do for themselves except in an emergency.
• Ensure training activities are within the physical and developmental abilities of the children.
• Instruct positively and give equal attention and encouragement to all children to develop their skills and enjoyment.
• Report any concerns you have and any allegations (however trivial they may seem) to the Senior Instructor in charge and /or to Sarah Kincaid.