Behaviour Policy

Content:
The following procedure covers:

Introduction
Changing room behaviour
Poolside behaviour
Gala behaviour
Disciplinary action
Reporting of incidents

Introduction

DSC is a friendly, caring club that wants swimmers of all abilities to have a good time and improving their swimming capabilities. However DSC is mainly run by volunteers who help and coach in their own time. Coaches and volunteers who are giving up their free time, will only continue to do so if they feel that the swimmers are paying attention, following the rules and are polite and respectful.

Equally DSC expects the coaches, parents and volunteers to also follow the rules and be polite and respectful.

DSC do not tolerate abusive behaviour or violence toward the adults or swimmers.

Changing Room behaviour

Parents are responsible for all children 8 years and under.

Coaches are not responsible for any swimmers in the changing rooms

Children over 8 (and those supervised) are expected to adhere to the following:

Changing rooms are to get showered and changed in – not for messing about in
Swimmers must only go in the changing rooms of their own sex
Other swimmers belongings must be left alone
Swimmers must be responsible for their own belongings
Swimmers must remember that the public may be using the changing rooms at the time and that swimmers represent the swimming club

Poolside behaviour

Coaches are responsible for all swimmers whilst they are on poolside, not when they go to the changing rooms or toilets.

When on poolside at training sessions swimmers are expected to adhere to the following:

Whilst the club wants swimmers to have fun, swimmers are in the Pool to swim!
Swimmers must respect all other swimmers and stick to the club rules
Swimmers must not behave inappropriately to other swimmers
Swimmers must follow the coaches instructions and listen carefully
Other swimmers belongings on poolside must be left alone
Swimmers must be responsible for their own belongings
Swimmers must remember that the public may be using the Pool at the same time and that swimmers represent the swimming club

Violent behaviour and bullying will not be tolerated in our club.

Gala behaviour

Coaches are responsible for all swimmers whilst they are on poolside, not when they go to the changing rooms or toilets.

Whether galas are at home or away, the following must be adhered to:

Ensure you are ready well in advance for your races
Do not mess about in the changing rooms or on balconies etc, stay with the Team
Be respectful towards the coaches
Do not mess about on poolside
Do not touch the equipment
Stay out of the way of the officials and poolside helpers
Be quiet at the start of races
Wear DSC hats
Swimmers must remember that other swimmers and adults from other clubs are there at the same time and that swimmers must represent the swimming club
Support and encourage all swimmers in the team

Disciplinary action

DSC prefer not to have to issue any form of disciplinary action, and in all incidents will discuss the issue first with the swimmer, explaining that the behaviour is wrong and why. The red and yellow card procedure, is only used when a coach or volunteer feel that they are being repeated disobeyed.

The following procedure is in place for training sessions:

1)If poor behaviour is witnessed by a coach a verbal warning will be issued
2)If the poor behaviour continues the offending swimmer (s) will be issued a yellow card. At this point the swimmer will be asked to sit on poolside. It is at the coaches’ discretion as to the length of time (maximum 10 minutes).
3)If the poor behaviour continues again, after the swimmer has returned to the pool, then a red card will beA red card will result in a swimmer missing training sessions. The coach will decide on the length of time of the suspension (maximum 1 week).
4)If a swimmer repeated is issued red cards the Chair (in conjunction with the committee) will decide if expulsion is necessary.
5)Any red cards that are issued will be detailed on the Incident Log and the parent informed. This Incident Log will be discussed at committee meetings.

The following procedure is in place for galas / splash nights:

1)If poor behaviour is witnessed by a coach or poolside volunteer a verbal warning will be issued
2)If the poor behaviour continues the offending swimmer (s) will be issued a yellow card. At this point the swimmer will be asked to quietly sit on poolside. It is at the coaches / volunteers discretion as to the length of time (maximum 10 minutes). If this repeat offense occurs during a splash night or open meet, a swimmer’s ‘time out’ may include aIf the swimmer is representing DSC as part of the team, and they get a yellow card, and a race is due during the ‘time out’ they will not be asked to miss their race, but will have to continue the ‘time out’ after their race.
3)If the poor behaviour continues again during the gala, then a red card will beA red card will result in a swimmer missing training sessions. Only a coach can issue a red card and they will decide on the length of time of the suspension (maximum 1 week).
4)If a swimmer repeated is issued red cards the Chair (in conjunction with the committee) will decide if expulsion is necessary.
5)Any red cards that are issued will be detailed on the Incident Log and the parent informed. This Incident Log will be discussed at committee meetings.

All personnel issuing warnings or cards MUST be sure that they are dealing with the incident / behaviour fairly, and that if more than one swimmer is misbehaving, the severity of the warning is explained to all involved swimmers.

Reporting Incidents

All parents and swimmers are encouraged to informally report incidents to the Parent Laision Officer (or anther committee member) who speak to coaches on poolside.

Should a swimmer or parent feel that a verbal complaint is not sufficient, they must write a formal complaint to the welfare officer.

The welfare officer will investigate the complaint, gain statements and discuss the findings with either the Chair or Vicechair. The Chair or Vicechair will then decide the course of action to be taken.

A formal response will be made to the complainant both in writing and in discussion.

As a club, we want to try to deal with all matters before they become serious, we want all swimmers and parents to discuss any issues however small they seem with a coach or a committee member who is not on poolside coaching.

Associated Forms:

Incident (Red Card) Log

Sources of Information

Code of conduct and Ethics (representatives and swimmers)
Constitution Section 6 – Expulsion and other Disciplinary action
ASA Guidelines for handling Internal Club disputes

Code of conduct and Ethics (representatives and swimmers)

All representatives and swimmers representing the Dunstable Swimming Club must:

* Put the well-being, health and safety of members above all considerations including developing performance.

* Comply with the codes, rules and laws within the guidelines set out by the ASA.

* Work without discrimination on the grounds of race, colour, language, religion, birth or social status as set out in the equal opportunities policy.

* Respect the basic human rights, worth and dignity of each member.

* Not encourage swimmers, volunteers, officials or parents to violate the rules of the club or the sport.

* Observe the authority and the decisions of all officials.

* Encourage all swimmers to obey the spirit of the rules and laws both in and out of the pool.

* Ensure that all teaching and training and competition programmes are appropriate for the age, ability and experience of the individual swimmer.

* Treat other competitors and teams with respect, in victory and defeat

* Be able to present evidence of qualifications on request.

* Treat all personal information about individual members as confidential except in exceptional circumstances regarding health and safety, medical requirements, disciplinary action or in accordance with ASA Child Protection procedures and guidelines.

* Display the highest standards of personal hygiene.

* Not drink alcohol or smoke either before or during teaching or coaching sessions or competitions.

* Seek ways of and be willing to increase the development of their current qualifications.

* Swimmers should be on poolside at least ten minutes prior to the start of each training session, to allow time for stretching exercises.

* Swimmers should listen to and follow the Coaches instructions during training sessions.

* Swimmers should avoid any actions that might cause hurt (emotional or physical) or endangers themselves or others.

* Swimmers should report any incident or damage (in particular any damage to the pool), to the Coach or Team Manager.

* When representing DSC, only the highest standards of behaviour will be accepted. Swimmers should try at all times to wear a DSCs hat and be supportive of other team members and the Team Manager.

* The Committee and Coaches reserve the right to exercise appropriate sanctions where this Code of Conduct is not adhered to.

 

Constitution
Section 6 – Expulsion and other Disciplinary action

6.1 The Committee shall have power to expel a member when, in its opinion, it would not be in the interests of the Club for him/her to remain a member.

6.2 The Club shall adopt and comply with the ASA Guidelines for handling Internal Club Disputes (“the Guidelines”) as the same may be revised from time to time. The Guidelines are set out as an Appendix to the ASA Judicial Laws and appear in the ASA Handbook. A copy of the current Guidelines may be obtained from the ASA Legal Affairs Department.

6.3 A member may not be expelled or (subject to Rule6.4 below) be made the subject of any other penalty unless the panel hearing the complaint shall [unanimously] OR [by a two-thirds majority] vote in favour of the expulsion of (or other penalty imposed upon) the member.

6.4 The Officers of the Club (or any person to whom the Committee shall delegate this power) may temporarily suspend or exclude a member from particular training sessions and/or wider club activities, when in their opinion; such action is in the interests of the Club. Where such action is taken the complaint will thereafter be dealt with in accordance with the Guidelines.

ASA Guidelines for handling Internal Club disputes

The purpose of these notes is to give Clubs guidance in the handling if internal club disputes. With the introduction of the Code of Ethics and the increased risk of litigation it is important that internal disputes are handled correctly from the onset.

Whilst most Clubs do from time to time have disputes between Committee members, parents and swimmers these can usually be resolved amicably between the individuals concerned. Occasionally it is also necessary to discipline swimmer for minor incidents of misbehaviour and this can also be done fairly by the Coach/Team Manager.

Sometimes a more serious dispute arises in a Club and because such a situation does not occur frequently Clubs are unsure how to handle the matter. This can lead to the dispute becoming more serious with recourse to the judicial procedures becoming necessary.

These guidelines do not apply to paid employees of a club. If a club is in dispute with a paid employee then the employment law needs to be considered. Specialist legal advice may have to be sought.

General Principles

 

ASA Judicial Laws 105/106 Defines Protests and Complaints and it should first be

decided whether the matter is a Protest or a Complaint. A Club can deal with a

‘Protest’, provided that it is the Promoter of the Competition to which the ‘Protest’

relates. A Club cannot deal with a Complaint. However, it is often possible to

resolve a dispute within a Club without the matter becoming a formal Complaint. If

either party is dissatisfied with a decision reached in an internal Club dispute then

they still have the option to make a formal Complaint to the DJT.

 

It must be noted that a Club only has the power to legislate for a breach of its own

rules and can only suspend a swimmer from its own club activities. The key ASA

Law to be followed is Law 134. A Club does not have the power to handle a dispute

relating to a member of another Club, or deal with an offence against ASA Law.

 

The key principle to be followed is that ASA Law conforms to the law of the land in

so much that an individual accused of an alleged offence is innocent until proven

guilty and he must have reasonable opportunity to present a defence and have his

views heard.

 

In these notes reference is made to the term ‘dispute’ to avoid confusion with the

term ‘Complaint’ used in formal ASA Judicial terms. The term Club could also refer

to a League or County Association.

Web Ref: dlfw/9.12.2001

 

It is assumed for the purpose of these notes that the dispute is between the Club

and one or more of its members. It is most important that the same people in the

Club do not become both the prosecutor and the judge or the defender and the

judge. If the Committee or its officers are either the prosecutor or defender or

involved in the dispute then they must find other members not connected with the

matter to hear the evidence from both parties to the dispute.

 

There are occasions when a problem arises in a Club, for example fighting between

members in a training session, where immediate action is required, such as a

temporary suspension or exclusion from a training session or from wider club

activities. Coaches and Officers should always be given the power to invoke a

temporary suspension. A report should then be made, immediately, to the Club

officers who should follow the procedures in section 3.

 

Procedures

 

On receipt of the dispute every effort should be made to resolve the matter by

informal discussion. In difficult cases the Chairman of the relevant DJT is

empowered to appoint an independent arbitrator to assist in achieving a

settlement. If this fails or it is clearly necessary to discipline a member, the

Club should set up a panel to deal with the matter.

 

The panel should consist of three persons, one to act as Chairman. A Secretary

may also be needed. The panel will need to consist of people not involved in

the dispute and the club may want to ask individuals from outside the Club to sit

on the panel. The full Club committee could of course hear the dispute but

given the number of people on a committee this could be seen as intimidating

and it is usually preferable to have a smaller number of people to hear a

disciplinary matter, hence the recommendation to set up a panel of three

persons.

 

The Chairman should notify both parties of the date, time and place of the hearing

and the names of the panel members. Both parties should be given copies of

all the papers and every effort should be made to hold the hearing within 14

days of the receipt of the dispute.

 

If either party is under 18 years of age they must be advised of their right to be

accompanied by a parent (or other person with a parental responsibility for

them) or coach to help them present their case.

 

Both parties should be allowed to bring witnesses.

 

The hearing should be as informal as possible but needs to be controlled. Points to

note.

(a) The Complainant should present evidence first and the accused should

have the right to reply.

Web Ref: dlfw/9.12.2001

(b) Both parties to the dispute should be able to call witnesses, the Complainant

going first

and each party should be allowed to question the other party’s witnesses.

(c) Witnesses should wait outside the hearing room until they are called. After

questioning they should wait in the hearing room, taking no further part in the

proceedings.

(d) The Chairman or Secretary should make notes of the hearing and the panel

should make every effort to announce their decision verbally to all the parties

without delay followed by written confirmation to reach all parties within five

days.

 

Powers of the Clubs

 

The powers of Clubs regarding the disciplinary action they can apply must not

exceed those in ASA Judicial Laws 129/130, which can result in full suspension

from Club activities for whatever period the panel shall decide, or in expulsion.

 

The panel if it wishes can impose a lesser penalty such as a written or verbal

reprimand.

If either party to the dispute is dissatisfied with the outcome they are still

entitled to make a Complaint to the Judicial Administrator at ASA Head Office,

Loughborough.

Further Information

Additional guidance can be obtained from the ASA Handbook Judicial Laws.

The Sports Council have also issued a booklet ‘Getting it right’ a Guide to

Sports Ethics and Disciplinary Procedures. This very useful document can be

obtained from the ASA Head Office.

Conclusions

The key message when dealing with disputes is to ensure:

(a) All parties are treated fairly.

(b) The complainant has the opportunity to present the case.

(c) The accused has the opportunity to respond.