Child Protection Policy
It is hard to avoid the difficult and upsetting issue of child abuse in today's news. The particularly bad cases which make the headlines are, unfortunately, only a small part of the issue as a whole. Abuse can occur in many ways; it need not be physical, but may be emotional, psychological, sexual, or even by neglect. But it is only the immediately shocking -- and so newsworthy -- cases which we tend to hear about.
The BAB, which is the umbrella body for Aikido in the UK, has drawn up a Child Protection Policy in order to eliminate the chance of any sort of abuse happening in its member organisations. SAUK is committed to implementing this Policy. To be clear from the start: a 'child' for these purposes is anyone under eighteen years old.
Whilst everyone needs to be aware of the issues involved, instructors who take classes for under-18s are particularly affected. These instructors need to get hold of a copy of the BAB policy, and be familiar with it. The latest BAB Policy is available on the BAB Safeguarding page.
If you do instruct under-18s, you need to bear in mind the following:
- An instructor taking classes for under-18s must be assisted by at least one other adult at all times.
- The instructor and all assistants must have a DBS check, explicitly for the purposes of Aikido.
So what is a DBS check and how do you get one? A DBS check, sometimes called a "disclosure", is a background check by the Disclosure & Barring Service. The Disclosure & Barring Service is part of the Home Office, which acts as a central point of contact for organisations which need to check people's backgrounds. The outcome of the check is treated in strict confidence. A copy of the results will be sent to you and the BAB.
To get a DBS check, you will need to apply for it. This needs to be done with a Child Protection Officer. The process cannot be done by post (If you have had a DBS check for some other purpose, then you will still need to be checked again especially fo Aikido). Go to the Disclosure & Barring Service page for what you need to provide to apply for a DBS check. The list is quite exacting. These are not our rules, nor the rules of the BAB, but are the rules of the Disclosure & Barring Service itself.
Contacting Someone About Child Protection
- Contact your Club or Association Child Protection or Child Welfare Officer. You should have contact information in your membership book, on club noticeboards and on club web sites.
- Contact the SAUK Child Protection Officer at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: 01229 832855 or 07584 583518
- If you are a child, or have concerns about a child's safety, you can ring either:
the NSPCC's 24 hour freephone helpline on 0808 800 5000
or ChildLine on 0800 1111