Five years ago at a Play By The Rules forum national sporting organisations (NSO’s) identified child protection in sport as a top priority for the sector. The Australian Sports Commission (ASC) subsequently commissioned a report in 2014 regarding the capacity of sport to protect children and young people from abuse, harm and exploitation.
Since the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse, the ASC committed to extend their work in this area, developing the National Safeguarding Children in Sport Strategy (NSCSS) in order to:
- enhance the collective culture across all Australian sports to safeguard children and young people
- explore strategies and a best approach for how all staff, management and volunteers can better safeguard and respond to children and young people into the future.
As of January 1 2017 Victorian sporting and recreation clubs that provide services or facilities specifically for children have been required to meet new Child Safe Standards. These standards are designed to drive cultural change and embed a focus on child safety by placing children’s rights at the forefront of the organisation’s mind.
With unprecedented growth in female participation in particular, including previously male dominated sports, club resources and volunteers are often stretched to capacity. CPS, a provider of training in the Child Safety Standards, recognises the challenge facing community sport to not only comply with legislation, such as new Working With Children Check requirements, but to imbed child safe practices within its culture.
Later this month Phil Doorgachurn, CPS Professional Development & Education Unit Senior Consultant, will sit on the panel for the ASC’s Child Safe Training to be rolled out to NSO’s. The challenge for NSO’s going forward will be to ensure child safe practices and knowledge filters down to state bodies and to local junior club level.
CPS Workshops in December
Friday 8 December
Safer Organisations: Implementing Child Safe Standards
Tuesday 12 December
Child Abuse: Recognising, Responding, Recording & Reporting
If your sport or recreational club would like to find out more about the Child Safe Standards and workshops available at CPS, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 03 9450 0900 and ask for the Professional Development & Education Unit. CPS also provides consultancy for organisations in developing child safe policies and practices.