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Welfare policy

The primary concern of the club is the protection and welfare of its members.

If you or your child has any problems or concerns you or they should discuss these with any club official you or they feel confident with.

Responsibility for children before, during and after club sessions

  • Parents/guardians should be aware that some club sessions take place in pools where the general public have a right of access and that changing facilities may be shared.
  • Whereas the club takes responsibility for children during training in and around the pool it cannot be held responsible for members before or after training sessions in changing rooms and common areas.
  • All club members and parents/guardians have a shared duty of care and if they see any suspicious behaviour they should report any incident to the coach, club committee member or the pool management.
  • Parents/guardians are reminded that they are welcome to remain and watch at all club sessions.

Before Club Sessions

  • Please ensure that members do not arrive at club sessions too early and are not just dropped off outside the venue.
  • Parents/guardians are responsible for their children until they arrive at the pool area.
  • Parents/guardians should check that coaches are present to take responsibility for the session.
  • Parents/guardians should accompany their child if they have any concerns about their welfare in the changing rooms.
  • Parents/guardians should not leave their children at club venues until they are under the supervision of a club official.

During Club Sessions

  • While a child is training he/she remains the responsibility, under the duty of care, of the person who is teaching/coaching him/her at that time on behalf of the club.
  • If a swimmer goes out of the pool area (for example to go to the toilet) he/she should make the coach/teacher aware of this.
  • If he/she fails to return in a reasonable time, or appears upset upon leaving the poolside the coach/teacher should request a suitable club official, senior club swimmer or parent/guardian to ensure that he/she is all right. It is best practice for two people to look for a missing swimmer.
  • If an incident occurs in the changing room between a swimmer and any other person it should be reported to the coach, club committee member or the pool management. The club has a duty to act upon that concern and investigate appropriately.
  • If the incident involves a person not associated with the club, the pool manager will be made aware and consideration given as to whether the statutory agencies need informing.

After a session is completed

  • Parents/guardians should ensure that they arrive at the venue before the end of the training session to take responsibility for their child as they leave the pool area.
  • Parents/guardians should accompany their child if they have any concerns about their welfare in the changing rooms.
  • The club has a duty of reasonable care to swimmers, which extends to an awareness on the part of the club that their junior members have been collected, in so far as is possible, at the conclusion of a session i.e. that a swimmer is not left unsupervised if a parent is late. This does not extend to searching the changing areas in case a junior club member was there, this is the responsibility of parents/guardians.
  • Any child who has not been collected after a club session should make that known to the coach taking the session so that they can be supervised appropriately until a parent arrives or the parent communicates alternative arrangements.
  • Parents/guardians should carry a mobile telephone whenever possible and ensure that their child knows the number to enable the club to contact them if they do not arrive to collect their child.
  • If in exceptional circumstances a parent/guardian is going to be delayed in collecting a swimmer they should contact the coach taking the session or the swimming venue to enable the club to assist in making suitable alternative arrangements or to continue supervision.
  • Where a parent/guardian does not collect or make suitable alternative arrangements to ensure the safety of a minor, he or she may be viewed as failing to exercise parental responsibility.
  • In a situation where a child fails to be collected, the pool operator or club official should refer directly to social services or the police for assistance.
  • If a parent/guardian repeatedly fails to collect a minor in reasonable time from the swimming venue it will be reported to the Independent Child Protection Officer of the ASA for guidance and appropriate action.

Filming children during club sessions

  • Club coaches may from time to time wish to video a member swimming at a club session to show them how they are swimming, to highlight any errors in their stroke and to assist in swimming stroke development.
  • If the coaches believe this would assist the swimmer they will obtain the written permission of the parent/guardian to do so in advance. The parent/guardian would also be invited and encouraged to be in attendance while such videoing took place.
  • If there are any concerns during the session videoing will cease and the video not be used.
  • After videoing, once it has served its purpose, the video will be destroyed.

Photography

  • The publishing of a photograph of a swimmer under 18 either in the press, on the club notice board or on the club website will only be done with parents/guardians consent and in line with ASA guidelines.
  • Photographic details will not include the swimmers name.
  • A parent or guardian has the right to refuse to have their own children photographed.

Transporting Children

  • Sevenoaks Swimming Club will not arrange transport for swimmers to or from galas in the cars of coaches or officials.
  • A coach will be arranged as necessary for away galas and there will be club representatives of both sexes on board.

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