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Safeguarding Policy

GUI, ILGU, The PGA in Ireland

The guidelines in this document are based on the national guidelines as outlined in the following documents:
Code of Ethics and Good Practice for Children’s Sport, Sports Ireland (SI) & Sports Council Northern Ireland (Sport NI), 2005

For Republic of Ireland Clubs and organisations reference should also be made to
Children First: National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children, Dept. of Health & Children 1999, revised 2009 and again in 2011 by the Department of Children and Youth Affairs
Our Duty to Care, Dept. of Health & Children 2002
National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Acts 2012 to 2016
Children First Act 2015

For Northern Ireland Clubs and organisations reference should also be made to
Children (NI) Order, 1995
Protection of Freedoms Act 2012
Co-operating to Safeguard Children, 2016
Area Child Protection Committee Regional Policy and Procedures, 2005.

Contents Page

Glossary 3

Acknowledgements 4

Core Values 5

Policy Statement 6

Disciplinary, Complaints and Appeals Procedure 7
Recruitment and Supervision Policy for Golf Leaders/Volunteers 8
Anti-Bullying Policy Statement 8

Guidelines and Codes of Conduct 9
Code of Conduct for Juniors
Guidelines for Parents/Guardians
Code of Conduct for Golfs Leaders
Guidelines for Golfs Leaders
(including professional, coach, convenor, etc.)
Guidelines on use of Photographic and Filming Equipment 11
General Guidelines with Juniors 12
Travelling, Supervision and Away Trips
Safety and Physical Contact
Late Collection
Adults and Juniors Playing Together
Juniors playing on the Course Without Adults
Guidelines on Changing Rooms
Mobile Phones

Child Welfare and Protection Procedures 16
Response to a Junior Disclosing Abuse
Reporting Suspected or Disclosed Child Abuse
Allegations against Golf Leaders
Confidentiality, Anonymous Complaints and Rumours

Appendix 20
1. Volunteer/Coach Application Form
2. Confidential Reference Form
3. Leaders Code of Conduct
4. Juniors/Players Code of Conduct
5. Parental/Guardian Consent Form
6. Guidelines for Parents/Guardian
7. Players selected to represent golf agreement
8. Golf’s Anti Bullying Policy and Guidance
9. Photographic Guidelines
10. Standard Report Form (a) For ROI (b) For NI
11. Useful Contacts

Golf, when referred to as a collective authority, shall mean the GUI, ILGU, The PGA in Ireland and CGI.

The Golfing Union of Ireland, founded in 1891, the administrative authority for men’s amateur golf in Ireland.

The Irish Ladies’ Golf Union, founded in 1893, the administrative authority for ladies’ amateur golf in Ireland.

The PGA in Ireland
The Professional Golfers’ Association in Ireland, originally founded in 1911 by the GUI at the request of the Professional Golfers of Ireland and then known as the Irish Professional Golfers’ Association, the Governing Authority for Professional Golf in Ireland.

The Confederation of Golf in Ireland (CGI) was established to support, promote and develop the game of golf on the island of Ireland. A not for profit organisation, the CGI was established by the Golfing Union of Ireland (GUI), the Irish Ladies Golf Union (ILGU) and the Professional Golfers Association in Ireland(PGA) to complement the work of the three associations in advancing the game of golf in Ireland.

The island of Ireland.

A provincial branch of the GUI

A district of the ILGU

Referring to both the GUI and ILGU

Affiliated organisation
Any GUI or ILGU affiliated member golf clubs.

Sport Ireland and Sport NI.

Junior Convenor
The individual(s) in the club/organisation who heads the Junior Golf Committee or oversees the development of junior programmes.

Designated Liaison Person (DLP)
The Designated Liaison Person is responsible for ensuring that reporting procedures within an organisation are followed so that child welfare and protection concerns are referred promptly to the Statutory Authorities. The Designated Liaison Person should record all concerns or allegations of child abuse brought to his/her attention, and the actions taken following receipt of a concern or allegation of child abuse.  

National Designated Liaison Person
Is the same as a DLP (above) but at National level

National Children’s Officer (NCO)
A nominated person within each body to advise on all matters in relation to safeguarding
Club Children’s Officer (CO)
Club Children’s Officers should be junior centred in focus and have as the primary aim, the establishment of a junior centred environment within the club.  S/he is the link between children and the adults in the club. S/he also takes responsibility for monitoring and reporting to the Club Management Committee on how club policy impacts on young people and Golf Leaders.

A volunteer, PGA Professional or qualified coach who works with and/or facilitates juniors to learn and compete in golf. A volunteer includes, but is not limited to, Junior Convenors, Teachers, Coaches, Golf Professionals and members of the Junior Golf Committees and those appointed to positions of trust with juniors.

Parent shall mean parent, guardian or carer

Juniors/Junior members
The terms “junior member, juniors, young people and children” will be used interchangeably in the text to refer to those under 18 years of age.

Golf’s Policy
Golf’s Safeguarding Policy– this document, which is based on guidelines of the SI and SNI and those listed at the front of this document.

Statutory Authorities
Refers to those who have statutory responsibility for the welfare and protection of juniors in Ireland, namely An Garda Síochána / PSNI and Tusla Child and Family Agency / Health and Social Care Trust.

Golf would particularly like to mention the following organisations who gave kind permission for the use and adaptation of materials:
Swim Ireland
CPSU (Child Protection in Sport Unit)
The PGA in Ireland

Golf received advice from a number of individuals and organisations during the completion of this policy including:
Sport Ireland
NSPCC – Child Protection in Sport Unit
The PGA in Ireland

Core Values in Sport for Juniors

Junior golf is based on the following principles that will guide the development of juniors within golf, (as outlined in page 9, Code of Ethics and Good Practice for Children's Sport). A junior’s experience of sport should be guided by what is best for the junior. The stages of development and the ability of the junior should guide the types of activity provided within the club/organisation. Adults will need to have a basic understanding of the needs of juniors, including physical, emotional and personal.

Integrity in relationships:
Adults interacting with juniors in sport should do so with integrity and respect for the child. There is a danger that sporting contexts can be used to exploit or undermine children. All adult actions in sport should be guided by what is best for the junior and in the context of quality, open working relationships. Verbal, physical, emotional or sexual abuse of any kind is unacceptable within sport.

Quality atmosphere and ethos
Sport for juniors should be conducted in a safe, positive and encouraging atmosphere. A child-centred ethos will contribute to a safe and enjoyable atmosphere within the organisation.

All children should be treated in an equitable and fair manner regardless of age, ability, sex, race, religion or belief, gender reassignment, social and ethnic background or political persuasion. Children with disabilities should be involved in sports activities in an integrated way, thus allowing them to participate to their potential alongside other juniors.

Equality Statement
Golf is committed to the principle of equality of opportunity. Golf aims to ensure that all present and potential participants, members, instructors, coaches, competitors, officials, volunteers and employees are treated fairly and on an equal basis, irrespective of sex, age, disability, race, religion or belief, sexual orientation, pregnancy and maternity, marriage and civil partnership, gender reassignment or social status.

Fair Play:
Fair play is the guiding principle of the Code of Ethics and Good Practice for Children's Sport. All sport for juniors should be conducted in an atmosphere of fair play.  Ireland has contributed and is committed to the European Code of Sports Ethics, which defines fair play as: “much more than playing within the rules”. It incorporates the concepts of friendship, respect for others and always playing with the right spirit. Fair play is defined as a way of thinking, not just behaving. It incorporates issues concerned with the elimination of opportunities, excessive commercialisation and corruption.
(European Sports Charter and Code of Ethics, Council of Europe, 1993).

A balanced approach to competition can make a significant contribution to the development of juniors, while at the same time providing fun, enjoyment and satisfaction. However, competitive demands are often placed on children too early, which results in excessive levels of pressure on them. This can contribute to a high level of drop out from sport. Golf Leaders should aim to put the welfare of the young person first and competitive standards second. A child-centred approach will help to ensure that competition and specialisation are kept in their appropriate place.

Policy    Statement

Golfing Union of   Ireland
Irish Ladies’ Golf   Union,
The PGA in Ireland & CGI
From here on will be represented by the term golf

The GUI, ILGU, The PGA in Ireland and CGI are fully committed to safeguarding the wellbeing of their members. Every individual in golf should at all times, show respect and understanding for member’s rights, safety and welfare and conduct themselves in a way that reflects the principles of the organisation and the guidelines contained in the Code of Ethics and Good Practice for Children’s Sport and Golf’s Safeguarding Policy.

In working with young people in golf our first priority is the welfare of the young people and we are committed to providing an environment that will allow participants to perform to the best of their ability, free from bullying and intimidation.

It is recommended that the above statement is written into the Constitution of each club affiliated to GUI and ILGU.

Disciplinary, Complaints & Appeals Procedure for GUI, ILGU, PGA & CGI

Non-safeguarding concerns may be dealt with under the ‘disputes’ rule contained within the Union’s Constitution. Any such complaints received in relation to PGA members will be referred to the PGA for consideration.
If any party does not agree with the disciplinary finding the appropriate appeals process can be invoked
The appeals committee shall have the power to confirm, set aside or change any sanction imposed by the disciplinary committee
The appropriate disciplinary committee should hear the case of all parties involved and decide if a rule or regulation has been infringed
They should, in writing, inform those involved of the sanctions to be imposed. Written notification should be given to parents if the complaint is against a junior member

Safeguarding Complaints
The majority of concerns will be poor practice issues and should be dealt with by the club, but for those complaints that cause serious grounds for concern (contact National DLP for further advice) the Golf Safeguarding Policy reporting procedures will be followed.
Complaints should be received in writing/email by the National DLP of the union, CGI or the PGA Lead Compliance Officer. (see appendix 11 for contact details)
The complaint should outline all relevant details about the parties involved
If the complaint involves the possibility of a criminal offence, the National DLP will follow the Policy’s reporting procedure. The Statutory Authorities will then be informed
The DLP may convene a disciplinary committee (including 3 members involved with junior golf at Provincial/District or National level).
While maintaining confidentiality the appropriate disciplinary committee with safeguarding knowledge should hear the case of all parties involved and decide if behaviour has breached Golf’s Safeguarding Policy.
They should, in writing inform those involved of the sanctions to be imposed. Written notification should be given to parents if the complaint is against a junior member
Records of poor practice complaints should be kept on file by the Unions until the young person concerned becomes a full member within golf. The PGA will hold appropriate case management records in relation to their own members and staff at their national headquarters in accordance with data protection legislation and UK Child Protection legislation

This is the process for the GUI, ILGU, PGA and CGI.
Any safeguarding concerns within golf clubs should be made to their CCO or DLP. The DLP is responsible for reporting any allegations to the statutory authorities .

Recruitment & Supervision Policy for Golf Leaders/Volunteers

GUI, ILGU, PGA and CGI will take all reasonable steps to ensure that adults representing them and working with juniors are suitable to do so and are appropriately qualified, experienced and motivated. Recruitment and/or supervision procedures will apply to all persons with substantial access to juniors, whether paid or unpaid. A decision to appoint a Leader is the responsibility of the Branch/District /Union/PGA and not of any one individual within it. The relevant committees ratify all recommendations for appointment.
Golf will use the following as a suitable recruitment procedure and would recommend all golf clubs’ follow these best practice procedures: -

The responsibilities of the role and the level of experience/qualifications required should be drawn up and clearly stated

Once voted / nominated to an elected position the Leader should be made aware of the code of conduct as it relates to juniors and any related guidelines within this document. This involves newly recruited volunteers and all volunteers assigned by the Branch / District / Union / PGA for that season. Existing Leaders will sign the appropriate code of conduct, including the self- declaration questions, (see appendix 3). Leaders will also be requested to undergo Garda Vetting in the Republic of Ireland and an Access NI check in Northern Ireland.

Safeguarding 1 course must be completed, firstly on a face to face basis and then an online refresher course every 3 years until the 9th year which will require the face to face course being completed again.
For those residents in ROI please follow the link below for the online refresher course
For those residents in NI please follow the link below for the online refresher course
For an online introductory safeguarding course for anyone who has infrequent contact with children in a sports organisation

New Leaders should fill in an information form, giving names of two referees that can be contacted and answering the self-declaration questions. (See appendix 1). For regulated position (i.e. working directly with children) you will also be asked to undergo Garda vetting (ROI) and Access NI(NI) checks and you will receive these forms from the relevant governing body.

Where possible there should be an induction, this can be done in an informal manner with members of the junior committee, perhaps on a junior competition day. Following this, a probationary period is advisable.

Adequate supervision should always be provided, a Leader should not have to work alone

Every effort should be made to manage and support appointed Leaders. Coaching courses and workshops will be provided; codes of conduct will be made available and Garda Vetting/Access NI will be implemented.

Golf’s Anti-Bullying Policy Statement
Bullying can occur between an adult and young person, and young person to young person. In either case, it is not acceptable within Golf. The competitive nature of golf can create an environment that provides opportunities for bullying. The bully may be a parent who pushes too hard, a coach who adopts a win-at-all costs philosophy, a young player who intimidates another or an official who places unfair pressure on a person.

Golf’s Anti-Bullying Policy and Guidance (appendix 8) applies to all – juniors, adults, parents, coaches and any others who help and assist within golf and golf activities.
Code of Conducts
The codes of conduct are for junior members, parents and leaders involved in activities organised by the Unions or CGI. We recommend clubs adopt these codes and if clubs wish to add to these, any amended guidelines should remain consistent with the ethos that the welfare of the child is paramount.

Juniors Code of Conduct
Golf wishes to provide the best possible environment for all juniors involved in the sport. Juniors deserve to be given enjoyable, safe sporting opportunities, free of abuse of any kind. These participants have rights, which must be respected, and responsibilities that they must accept. Juniors have responsibilities to treat other participants and Golf Leaders with fairness and respect.

Guidelines for Parents
To help your child have a positive experience remember to:
Focus on what your child wants to get out of golf
Be the best role model you can be
Help your child achieve their potential
Be respectful of other children and coaches
Communicate with the coach and club
Parents are expected to co-sign their child’s code of conduct form (appendix 4 and the specific parental code of conduct form/guidelines for parent’s appendix 6)
Leaders Code of Conduct
Leaders should familiarise themselves with Golf’s Safeguarding Policy, in particular this code of conduct. Leaders should read and agree to abide by these terms. Leaders must complete this Code of Conduct (appendix 3) annually.

Guidelines for Golf Leaders (including professional, coach, convenor etc.)
Golf recognises the key role leaders (professionals, coaches, convenors, captains, selectors and team managers, etc.) play in the lives of juniors in sport. Leaders in golf should strive to create a positive environment for the children in their care. They have an overall responsibility to take the necessary steps to ensure that positive and healthy experiences are provided. All Leaders should have as their first priority the children’s safety and enjoyment of golf and should adhere to the guidelines and regulations set out in the Golf’s Safeguarding Policy.

Leaders should respect the rights, dignity and worth of every junior and must treat everyone equally, regardless of gender reassignment, age, sex, race, ability, religion or belief, social and ethnic background or political persuasion etc.

Leaders working with juniors in golf should have the appropriate experience or hold the necessary qualifications. Leaders will be expected to go through an appropriate recruitment and a selection procedure, whether paid or unpaid. Vetting checks must be undertaken to comply with legislation, for those in ROI Garda Vetting should be successfully completed every 3 years for all those working with or in contact with juniors on a regular and continuous basis. For all those in NI working unsupervised in ‘regulated activity, ‘frequently’ or ‘intensively’ must complete an Access NI enhanced check every 3 years. For those ‘new’ to the organisation references will be required and will be followed up.

There will be a ‘sign-up’ procedure, whereby the appointed/reappointed leaders agree to abide by Golf’s Safeguarding Policy.  The Leaders Code of Conduct must be completed annually.  You should know and understand the junior protection policies and procedures in Golf’s Safeguarding Policy.

Once appointed the Leader should act as a role model and promote the positive aspects of golf and maintain the highest standards of personal conduct. Leaders should develop an appropriate relationship with juniors, based on mutual trust and respect. Remember your behaviour to players, other officials, and opponents will influence the players in your care. You should report any concerns you have to the National Children’s Officer & DLP in your organisation, or in a club environment the DLP.

Being a role model
You will be required to display high standards of language, manner, punctuality, preparation and presentation
Ensure that players in your care respect the rules of the game. Insist on fair play and ensure players are aware you will not tolerate cheating or bullying behaviour
Encourage the development of respect for opponents, officials, selectors and other leaders and avoid criticism of fellow professionals and coaches. Do not criticise other leaders
The use of illegal drugs, alcohol and tobacco must be actively discouraged as they are incompatible with a healthy approach to sporting activity. Leaders should avoid the use of alcohol and illegal substances before coaching, during events, while supervising trips with juniors and providing a duty to care

Reducing Risk
It is important that leaders build a good working relationship with juniors they are coaching but ensure this relationship remains professional and in accordance with Golf’s Safeguarding Policy and the Leaders Code of Conduct. (appendix 3)
Leaders are responsible for setting and clearly stating the boundaries between a working relationship and friendship with players.  It is advisable for leaders not to involve juniors in their personal life i.e. visits to leaders’ homes to ensure that they reduce the risk of their behaviour being misinterpreted by the participant or others
Avoid working alone and ensure there is adequate supervision for all activities
Where possible work in an open environment and ensure that physical contact is appropriate and has the permission or understanding of the junior
Care must be taken not to expose a junior intentionally or unintentionally to embarrassment or disparagement by use of sarcastic or flippant remarks about the junior or his/her family
Physical punishment or physical force must never be used. Never punish a mistake - by verbal means, physical means, or by exclusion

A positive environment
Be generous with praise and never ridicule or shout at players for making mistakes or for losing a game.  All juniors are entitled to respect.
Be careful to avoid the “star system”. Each junior deserves equal time and attention
Remember that juniors play for fun, enjoyment and competition.  Never make winning the only objective
Set realistic goals for the participants and do not push juniors. Create a safe and enjoyable environment
When approached to take on a new player, ensure that any previous coach- participant relationship has been ended in a professional manner
When juniors are invited into adult groups/squads, it is advisable to get agreement from a parent/guardian. Boundaries of behaviour in adult groups are normally different from the boundaries that apply to junior groups/squads
Leaders who become aware of a conflict between their obligation to their players and their obligation to the club/organisation must make explicit to all parties concerned the nature of the conflict and the loyalties and responsibilities involved
Leaders should communicate and co-operate with medical and ancillary practitioners in the diagnosis, treatment and management of their players’ medical or related problems. Avoid giving advice of a personal or medical nature if you are not qualified to do so. Any information of a personal or medical nature must be kept strictly confidential unless the welfare of the junior requires the passing on of this information
The nature of the relationship between leader and a participant can often mean that a leader will learn confidential information about a player or player’s family. This information must be regarded as confidential and, except where abuse is suspected, must not be divulged to a third party without the express permission of the player/family

Photographic Image Guidelines

Golf has adopted guidelines (appendix 9) for consideration in relation to the use of images of athletes on their websites and in other publications as part of its commitment to providing a safe environment to juniors. Golf will take all necessary steps to ensure that juniors are protected from the inappropriate use of their images in resource and media publications, on the internet and elsewhere.
This guidance is for anyone with responsibility for the publication of official photography (including videos) of children involved in golfing activities or events.

Golf benefits from using images of young participants to promote and celebrate activities, events and competitions. Parents and children generally welcome opportunities to celebrate or publicise their achievements. Some leaders/ coaches may want to use photographs or videos as a tool to support a young athlete’s skill development.

However, the use of photos and videos on websites and social media, and in posters, the press or other publications, can pose direct and indirect risks to children and young people if not managed correctly.

Clubs wishing to use or permit the use of images of children involved in their activities must therefore follow the good practice guidelines outlined in appendix 9 to safeguard children.

What are the risks?
Children may be identified, located, groomed or contacted
Taking or producing inappropriate or illegal images of children

Video recording as a coaching aid: Video equipment can be used as legitimate coaching aid. However, permission should first be obtained from the player and the player’s parent.
Anyone concerned about any photography taking place at events or training sessions can contact the National Children’s Officer & DLP and ask them to deal with the matter.

General Guidelines with Juniors

There is extra responsibility taken on by leaders when they travel with juniors to events.  When travelling with juniors you should:
Inform parents who will be transporting their child, why and how long the journey will take.
Attempt to have more than one child in the car.
Alternate drivers if possible and which child is dropped off last.
Ensure the driver has a point of contact/mobile phone.
Have a person other than the planned driver talk to the child about transport arrangements to check they are comfortable about the plans.
Ensure that they have insurance to carry others.
Ensure drivers representing and volunteering on behalf of a club are vetted through Access NI/National Vetting Bureau if driving regularly, and therefore meeting the regulated activity criteria.  
Consider the need for booster seats.
Parents and coaches can also download Sport Ireland’s Safeguarding App. -Of-Ethics-App/ and one of the features of the App is a ‘Travel Tracker’ function. This allows parents and coaches who are driving someone else’s child/children home for example after a training session, to permit the child’s parent or guardian to view and have oversight of their journey.

Booster Seats
From 2006, the law in Europe requires all children in cars, vans and other goods vehicles to be carried using an appropriate child restraint until either they have reached the age of 12 years or are 150cm (5” in Republic of Ireland) and 135cms (4’ 5” in Northern Ireland) or whichever comes first with very few exceptions. The European law allowed countries to opt for minimum height of between 135cm and 150cm.
For more information visit;

Make sure there is an adequate adult: child ratio. This will depend on the nature of the activity, the age of the participants and any special needs of the group. As a guide a ratio of 1:8 for under 12 years of age and 1:10 for participants over 12 years of age. This is only a guide and will change depending on the circumstances, e.g. players with special needs or away trips
Where there are mixed groups there should be leaders of both genders
Avoid being alone with one participant, if you need to talk separately do so in an open environment, in view of others
Leaders should not need to enter the changing rooms unless juniors are very young or need special assistance, where supervision should be in pairs of appropriate gender
Clearly state time for start and end of training sessions or competitions, leaders should remain in pairs until all participants have been collected
Keep attendance records and records of any incidents / injuries that arise
Facilitate parents who wish to stay and supervise sessions, (for safety and supervision, not necessarily for their ‘technical’ expertise)

Away trips / Overnight stays
Separate permission forms should be signed by parents and participants, containing emergency contact number and any other relevant information.
Young participants should sign a Code of Conduct agreement
Appoint a group leader who will make a report on returning home to the Union/club committee who organised the trip
A meeting with parents and participants is useful to communicate travel times, competition details, other activities, gear requirements, medical requirements, special dietary needs and any other necessary details
Rooming arrangements – adults should not share rooms with juniors. Juniors should share rooms with those of same age and gender and adults should knock before entering rooms
All group socialisation should take place in communal areas (i.e. no boys in girls’ rooms and vice versa)
Alcohol, smoking or any illegal substances are not permitted to players
There must be at least one adult of each gender with a mixed party, there should be a good adult – child ratio, 1:5/6
Lights out times should be enforced
Juniors should be under reasonable supervision at all times and should never leave the venue or go unsupervised without prior permission

All clubs / organisations must have a safety statement, including specific risk assessments linked to the activity. They should also have procedures in place for safeguarding against such risks. In addition, clubs / organisations should:
Ensure activities are suitable for age and stage of development of participants
Keep a record of any specific medical conditions of the participants
Keep a record of emergency contact numbers for parents / guardians
Ensure any necessary protective gear is used
Ensure First Aid kit is close at hand with access to qualified first-aider
Know the contact numbers of emergency services
Keep first aid kit appropriately stocked
Ensure easy access to medical personnel if needed and have an emergency plan
If an incident occurs, make a brief record of injury and action taken. Make a brief record of the problem/action/outcome. Contact the participant’s parents and keep them informed of all details
Officials (convenors and referees, etc.) should ensure the conduct of the game
Participants should know and keep the etiquette guidelines of golf, keeping in mind that many rules are there for safety
Leaders should hold appropriate qualifications required by the governing body
Ensure there is adequate insurance cover for all activities
Ensure parents / guardians are present at finishing time of sessions or events

Physical Contact
Golf on occasion requires a ‘hands on approach’, especially in a teaching or coaching situation, e.g., it may be necessary to assist a junior when learning how to grip the club for the first time but the following should be taken into consideration
Avoid unnecessary physical contact
Any necessary contact should be in response to the needs of the junior and not the adult
It should be in an open environment with the permission and understanding of the participant and parent/guardian.
It should be determined by the age and developmental stage of the participant - Don’t do something that a child can do for themselves
Never engage in inappropriate touching

Late Collection
It is important to have some clear and easy guidelines if a parent is late to collect a junior, such as, contact the parent using the emergency contact number. If there is no answer, ask the junior if there is another family member to contact. Wait with the junior at the club or venue, preferably with other staff or volunteers. Remind parents of the policy in relation to good practice and supervision.

Adults and Juniors playing together
One of the reasons for the popularity of golf is that the game is not restricted either competitively or socially by skill, age or gender. Golf can be enjoyed and keenly contested by players from and between any number and/or apparently diverse groups. That this diversity, almost unique to golf, is encouraged is essential to ensure the continuity of one of the most endearing traditions of the game. Every effort must be made to promote this mix of physical and technical ability.
Responsible interaction between adults and juniors helps bring mutual respect and understanding and helps the standards of the club to be understood and maintained. Nevertheless, when playing golf with a junior, adults should always be aware that certain age-related differences do exist and should conduct themselves in a manner that recognises this.

Juniors playing on the course without adults
Golf courses may have a number of unmanned access and egress points which limit the control of juniors playing alone or with another junior, but this in itself should not preclude the club from attempting to minimise potential problems involving juniors playing together. Golf clubs should endeavour to have procedures in place for juniors to register in and out when using the golf club. This is to help ensure that they are aware when juniors are playing or on club premises.
If possible, it is advisable to have some method for juniors playing on their own or with another junior to sign in and out. If it is not practicable to hold a register, then at least permission should be gained from parents for their children to be on the club’s premises by including this in their Code of Conduct. (appendix 4)
The organisation is not responsible for providing adult supervision of juniors, except for formal junior golf coaching, matches or competitions

Changing Rooms
As golf clubs are seen as a recreational facility, members, visitors and juniors are entitled to the use of the changing rooms, this means that often people of all ages regularly need to change and shower during the same period.

Therefore, the following guidance in relation to adults and juniors using the changing rooms should be followed:
Adults should exercise care when in the changing rooms at the same time as juniors
Parents/guardians should be made aware that adults and juniors may need to share the changing facility.  The parent/guardian should discuss this with their child ensuring their child is aware of who to talk to if any issues arise in unsupervised areas.
Parents can choose to supervise their child while they change.
If juniors are uncomfortable changing or showering in public, no pressure should be placed on them.  Encourage them to do this at home.

Mobile Phones
Young people value their mobile phones as it gives them a sense of independence and they can often be given to young people for security to enable parents to keep in touch. However, technology has given direct personal contact between adults and juniors and in some cases adults have used this to cross personal boundaries placing themselves and young people at risk. The following guidelines should be followed:
As a Leader
Use group texts for communication among players and teams and inform parents of this at the start of the season, tournament or event.
It is not appropriate or acceptable to have constant contact with an individual athlete.
Don’t use your phone in inappropriate locations, such as changing rooms, especially if your phone has a camera.
Do not send messages late at night
Remember the principles of the Leaders Code of Conduct apply to social media communication as well and consider your digital footprint before posting.

As a Junior golfer
If you receive an offensive message, email or photo don’t reply to it, save it, make note of times and dates and tell a parent, children’s officer or responsible adult you trust.
Be careful about whom you give your number or email address to and don’t respond to unfamiliar numbers.
Don’t use your phone in inappropriate locations, such as changing rooms, especially if your phone has a camera.
Treat your phone as you would any valuable item so that you can guard against theft.

Child Welfare and Protection Procedures

The following are the procedures for dealing with any welfare or protection issue that may arise.  Child welfare and the protection of juniors is the concern of all adults at all times, irrespective of their role within the organisation.

If there are grounds for concern about the safety or welfare of a junior, you should react to the concern. Persons unsure about whether or not certain behaviours are abusive and therefore reportable, should contact the duty social worker in the local health services executive or Statutory Authorities department where they will receive advice.
Reasonable Grounds for concern
The TUSLA-Health Board or Health and Social Care Trust (HSCT) should always be informed when there are reasonable grounds for concern that a child may have been abused, or is being abused, or is at risk of abuse.
The following examples would constitute reasonable grounds for concern:
A specific indication from the child that he or she was abused (disclosure)
An account by a person who says the child is being abused
Evidence, such as an injury or behaviour, that is consistent with abuse and unlikely to be caused in another way
An injury or behavior that is consistent both with abuse and with an innocent, explanation, but where there are corroborative indicators supporting the concern that it may be a case of abuse e.g. a pattern of injuries, an implausible explanation, and other indications of abuse and/or dysfunctional behavior
Consistent indication, over a period of time that a child is suffering from emotional or physical neglect

A report may be made by any member in the organisation but should be passed on to the National Children’s Officer & DLP, who may in turn have to pass the concern to the local Statutory Authorities. It is not the responsibility of anyone working within golf, in a paid or voluntary capacity, to take responsibility or decide whether or not child abuse is taking place. That is the job of the local Statutory Authorities. However, there is a responsibility to protect juniors by assisting the appropriate agencies so that they can then make enquiries and take any necessary action to protect the junior.

Everyone should follow both procedures outlined below, firstly the procedure for responding to a junior in distress and secondly the procedure for reporting the concern.
Response to a Child Disclosing Abuse
When a junior discloses information of suspected abuse you should:
(a) Deal with any allegation of abuse in a sensitive and competent way through listening to and facilitating the junior to tell you about the problem, rather than interviewing the junior about details of what happened
(b) Stay calm and don’t show any extreme reaction to what the junior is saying. Listen compassionately, and take what the junior is saying seriously
(c) Understand that the junior has decided to tell something very important and has taken a risk to do so. The experience of telling should be a positive one so that the junior will not mind talking to those involved in the investigation
(d) Be honest with the junior and tell them that it is not possible to keep information a secret but you will maintain confidentiality
(e) Make no judgmental statements against the person whom the allegation is made
(f) Do not question the junior unless the nature of what s/he is saying is unclear. Do not use leading questions. Open, non-specific questions should be used such as “Can you explain to me what you mean by that”
(g) Check out the concerns with the Golf DLP and then advise the parents/guardians you are contacting the statutory authorities unless doing so would possibly place the child at any further risk.
(h) Give the junior some indication of what would happen next, such as informing parents/guardians, or Statutory Authorities. It should be kept in mind that the junior may have been threatened and may feel vulnerable at this stage.
(i) Carefully record the details
(j) Pass on this information to the National Children’s Officer & DLP
(k) Reassure the junior that they have done the right thing in telling you

Reporting Suspected or Disclosed Child Abuse
The following steps should be taken in reporting child abuse to the Statutory Authorities:
(a) Observe and note dates, times, locations and contexts in which the incident occurred or suspicion was aroused, together with any other relevant information
(b) Report the matter as soon as possible to the National Children’s Officer & DLP within the organisation who has responsibility for reporting abuse. If the National Children’s Officer & DLP has reasonable grounds for believing that the junior has been abused or is at risk of abuse, s/he will make a report to local Statutory Authorities who have statutory responsibility to investigate and assess suspected or actual child abuse
(c) In cases of emergency, where a junior appears to be at immediate and serious risk and the National Children’s Officer & DLP is unable to contact a duty social worker, An Garda Síochána/Police authorities should be contacted. Under no circumstances should a junior be left in a dangerous situation pending intervention by the Statutory Authorities
(d) If the National Children’s Officer & DLP is unsure whether reasonable grounds for concern exist s/he can informally consult with the local health board/Statutory Authorities. S/he will be advised whether or not the matter requires a formal report
A National Children’s Officer & DLP reporting suspected or actual child abuse to the Statutory Authorities will first inform the family of their intention to make such a report, unless doing so would put the child at further risk or undermine an investigation.
The Protection for Persons Reporting Child Abuse Act, 1998 (ROI only) provides immunity from civil liability to persons who report child abuse ‘reasonably and in good faith’ to the Tusla Child and Family Agency or An Garda Síochána. The act also covers the offence of ‘false reporting’.  The main provisions of the Act are:

1. The provision of immunity from civil liability to any person who reports child abuse “reasonably and in good faith” to designated officers of Tusla Child and Family Agency or any member of An Garda Síochána

2. The provision of significant protections for employees who report child abuse. These protections cover all employees and all forms of discrimination up to and including, dismissal

3. The creation of a new offence of false reporting of child abuse where a person makes a report of child abuse to the appropriate authorities “knowing that statement to be false”. This is a new criminal offence designed to protect innocent persons from malicious reports

This law does not exist in Northern Ireland, but an individual who reports concerns in ‘good faith’ is not deliberately attempting to slander another person’s name. In Northern Ireland, there is legislation, the Criminal Law Act (NI) 1967 which places the responsibility on everyone to report offences or to forward information to the police by emphasizing the, ‘duty of every other person, who knows or believes, (a) that the offence or some other arrestable offence has been committed: and (b) that he has information which is likely to secure, or to be material assistance in securing, the apprehension, prosecution or conviction of any person for that offence’
Allegations against Golf Leaders
Golf has agreed procedures to be followed in cases of alleged child abuse made against Golf Leaders. If such an allegation is made against a Golf Leader working within the organisation, two procedures should be followed:
The reporting procedure in respect of suspected child abuse (reported by the National Children’s Officer & DLP), see previous page
The procedure for dealing with the Golf Leader

The safety of the child making the allegation should be considered and the safety of any other children who may be at risk. The organisation will take any necessary steps that may be needed to protect children in its care.

The issue of confidentiality is important. Information is on a need to know basis and the Golf Leader should be treated with respect and fairness.

The reporting procedure
If the National Children’s Officer & DLP has reasonable grounds for concern, the matter should be reported to the Statutory Authorities, following the standard reporting procedure. See appendix 10 a (for ROI) and 10 b (for NI)

The procedure for dealing with Golf’s leader
The National Children’s Officer & DLP makes the report to the Statutory Authorities and seeks advice about how and when to inform the person the allegation is made against.
In golf, the Unions following advice from statutory agencies will inform the Leader that  
(a) an allegation has been made against him / her and
(b) the nature of the allegation. He / she should be afforded an opportunity to respond. His / her response should be noted and passed on to the Statutory Authorities
The Leader may be asked to step aside pending the outcome of the investigation. When a person is asked to step aside it should be made clear that it is only a precautionary measure and will not prejudice any later disciplinary proceedings

Disciplinary action on the Leader should be considered but only if this does not interfere with the investigation of the Statutory Authorities. It is important to consider the outcome of the investigation and any implications it might have. The fact that someone an allegation has been made against has not been prosecuted or been found guilty does not automatically mean that they are appropriate to work with juniors in the future.

Irrespective of the findings of the Statutory Authorities, the Golf Unions & PGA Disciplinary Committees will assess all individual cases to decide whether a member of staff or volunteer should be reinstated and if so how this can be sensitively handled. This may be a difficult decision, especially where there is insufficient evidence to uphold any action by the Statutory Authorities. In such case the Golf Disciplinary Committees must reach a decision based upon the available information which could suggest that on the balance of probability, it is more likely than not that the allegation is true, and the implications of this for the safety of juniors. The welfare of the junior should remain of paramount importance throughout. The Unions and PGA may need to disclose information to ensure the protection of juniors in its care, in NI clubs are obliged to pass information to the DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service).

Confidentiality should be maintained in respect of all issues and people involved in cases of abuse, welfare or poor practice. It is important that the rights of both the junior and the person about whom the complaint has been made are protected.

The following points should be kept in mind:

A guarantee of secrecy cannot be given, as the welfare of the junior will supersede all other considerations but confidentiality will be maintained.
All information should be treated in a careful and sensitive manner and should be discussed only with those who need to know
Information should be conveyed to the parents / guardians of the child in a sensitive way following consultation with the Golf DLP and statutory agencies
Giving information to others on a ‘need to know’ basis for the protection of a junior is not a breach of confidentiality
All persons involved in a child protection process (the child, his/her parents/guardians, the alleged offender, his/her family, Leaders) should be afforded appropriate respect, fairness, support and confidentiality at all stages of the procedure
Information should be stored in a secure place, with limited access only to designated people and/or National Children’s Officer & DLP
The requirements of the Data Protection laws should be adhered to
Breach of confidentiality is a serious matter

Anonymous Complaints
Anonymous complaints can be difficult to deal with but should not be ignored. In all cases the safety and welfare of the junior/juniors is paramount. Any such complaints relating to inappropriate behaviour should be brought to the attention of the National Children’s Officer & DLP. The information should be checked out and handled in a confidential manner.

Rumours should not be allowed to hang in the air. Any rumours relating to inappropriate behaviour should be brought to the attention of the National Children’s Officer & DLP and checked out without delay.

Appendix 1
Section 1

All information received in this form will be treated confidentially

Maiden Name (if applicable):
Telephone No:
Current Address:

Are you (Please tick):
               Employed     □               Unemployed   □              Student   □
               Homemaker  □               Retired           □               Other      □   

Previous work/voluntary experience & relevant qualifications:

Have you previously been involved in voluntary work?           YES □  /  NO □
If yes, give details:

Do you agree to abide by the Leaders Code of Conduct? Yes [  ] No [  ]
Any other relevant information?_____________________________________________________________________________

Please supply the names of two responsible people (not relatives) whom we can contact and who from personal knowledge are willing to endorse your application.  If you have had a previous involvement in a sports club one of these names should be that of an administrator / leader in your last club / place of involvement.


Section 2
Statement of non-discrimination
This club is affiliated to Name Governing Body and is committed to equal opportunity for all applicants including those with criminal convictions. Information about criminal convictions is requested to assist the selection process and will be taken into account only when the conviction is considered relevant to the post. Any disclosure will be seen in the context of the job criteria, the nature of the offence and the responsibility for the care of existing members, volunteers and employees. This organisation will adhere to NVB and Access NI guidance on the recruitment of ex-offenders.
For the purpose of your application for the post of:

We require all coaches/volunteers in positions of responsibility for managing the safety and development of young people to consent to a NVB or Access NI disclosure process and sign the declaration and return in marked confidential to (Name Governing Body Designated Liaison Person (DLP) to clarify who to return this form to in your sport)
Should you require further information, please contact Name Governing Body DLP
This organisation will adhere to NVB or Access NI’s Code of Practice

Name of Applicant: ____________________________________________________________________________
Home Address: ______________________________________________________________________________
Contact Telephone Number: _____________________________________________________________________
Club: ______________________________________________________________________________________

Please read this information carefully

The purpose of the check is to make sure that people are not appointed who might be a risk to children or vulnerable adults.

The check will tell us whether you have a criminal record, caution, or whether any other information about you held on barred lists may have a bearing on your suitability. Any information which we receive will be treated confidentially, and will be discussed with you before we make a final decision. After that decision is made the information returned from Access NI will be destroyed.

Advice to Applicants
Northern Ireland applicants: You have applied for a role which falls within the definition of an “excepted” position as provided by the Rehabilitation of Offenders (Exceptions) Order (NI) 1979: therefore ALL convictions including SPENT convictions that are not protected by the 2014 amendments MUST be disclosed. The disclosure of a criminal history information will not debar you from participating as a volunteer unless the Name Governing Body case management group considers that the information renders you unsuitable for the role applied for. In making this decision the Name Governing Body case management group will consider the nature of the offence/caution, how long ago it was committed and what age you were at the time and other factors which may be relevant. This information will be verified through an appropriate Access NI Enhanced Disclosure check. If you are currently facing prosecution for a criminal offence you should also bring this to our attention given the “excepted” nature of the role.  
Thank you for your co-operation.
Do you have any convictions/caution that are not “protected” as defined by the Rehabilitation of Offenders (Exception) (amendment) Order (Northern Ireland) Order 2014. Been barred by the Disclosure and Barring Service (formally the Independent Safeguarding Authority) which would prevent you from working with children and/or vulnerable adults or the subject of an investigation alleging that you were the perpetrator of adult or child abuse?
Yes No

If so, please state below the nature, date(s) and sentence of the offence(s), date prevented from working in this area or allegations
Please provide any other information you feel may be of relevance such as:
The circumstances of the offence/cautions/incident
A comment on the sentence received
Any relevant developments in your situation since then
Whether or not you feel the conviction has relevance to this post
Please continue on a separate page if necessary.
(If you require further information on what information to disclose please contact NIACRO Helpline Tel: 028 90 320157)

I understand that I must also complete a NVB or Access NI Disclosure Certificate Application Form and that this check must be carried out before my application for registration/appointment can be confirmed. This has been explained to me and I am aware that spent convictions/cautions may be disclosed. I declare that the information I have given is accurate.

Have you ever been known to any Social Service department as being a risk or potential risk to children?
Yes (if yes, please provide further information below): No

Have you been the subject of any disciplinary investigation and/or sanction by any organisation due to concerns about your behaviour towards children?
Yes (if yes, please provide further information) No

Confirmation of Declaration (tick box below)

I agree that the information provided here may be processed in connection with my volunteer/paid role and I understand that any role may be withdrawn or dismissal may result if information is not disclosed by me and subsequently come to the organisation’s attention.

I agree to inform the organisation within 24 hours if I am subsequently investigated by any agency or organisation in relation to concerns about my behaviour towards children or young people.

I understand that the information contained on this form and information supplied by third parties may be supplied by the Name of Governing Body to other persons or organisations in circumstances where this is considered necessary to safeguard other children.

I declare that any answers are complete and correct to the best of my knowledge and I will inform the ORGANISATION of any future convictions or charges.

Signature: ___________________________________________________________________________________

Print Name: _________________________________________________________________________________

Date: _________________________________________

Reference form – Appendix 2
(Name of applicant) is a Leader/Volunteer within golf at (Club/Organisations) and has given your name as a referee.
As this post involves substantial access to children and as an organisation committed to safeguarding children, it is important that if you have any reason to be concerned about this applicant that you do not complete the following form, but please contact us on:
CGI – Fiona Power, National Children’s Officer and Designated Liaison Person +3531 5052070
GUI – Barbara Creggy, National Children’s Officer and Designated Liaison Person +3531 5054000
ILGU – Audrey Quinn, National Children’s Officer and Designated Liaison Person +3531 2934833
PGA – Andy Wright, Lead Compliance and Safeguarding Officer   +44 (0) 1675 477897                             
Any information disclosed in this reference will be treated in confidence and in accordance with relevant legislation and guidance, and will only be shared with the person conducting the assessment of a candidate’s suitability for a post, if he or she is offered the position in question.

How long have you known this person?

In what capacity

Do you know of any reason why this
person should not work with children?
(If Yes, please contact the number above)



Telephone Number



Appendix 3
Leaders Code of Conduct
Leaders should familiarise themselves with Golf’s Safeguarding Policy, in particular this code of conduct. Leaders should read and agree to abide by these terms. Leaders must complete this Code of Conduct annually.

As a leader in golf I agree that I should:
Be positive during sessions and competitions, praise and encourage effort as well as results
Put the welfare of young person first, strike a balance between this and winning / results
Encourage fair play and treat participants equally
Recognise developmental needs, ensuring activities are appropriate for the individual
Plan and prepare appropriately
Have experience relevant to working with juniors or hold up-to-date qualifications and be committed to the guidelines in the Safeguarding Policy
Involve parents where possible and inform parents of progress as well as when problems arise
Keep a record of attendance at training and competitions
Keep a brief record of injury(s) and action taken
Keep a brief record of problem/action/outcomes, if behavioural problems arise
Report any concerns in accordance with this Code’s reporting procedures

Where possible I will avoid:
Spending excessive amounts of time with children away from others
Taking sessions alone
Taking children to my home
Taking children on journeys alone in my car

Sports Leaders should not:
Use any form of physical punishment or physical force on a child
Use any form of abusive language
Exert undue influence over a participant in order to obtain personal benefit or reward
Engage in rough physical games, sexually provocative games or allow or engage in inappropriate touching of any kind, and /or make sexually suggestive comments about, or to a child. This includes innuendo, flirting or inappropriate gestures and terms
Take measurements or engage in certain types of fitness testing without the presence of another adult
Undertake any form of therapy (hypnosis etc.) in the training of children

Communication with Parents
To continue to ensure a child reaches their full potential and enjoys their time at the club officials/coaches need to encourage parents to consider;
• What do they want their child to get out of golf?  Is it the same as what the parent wants?
• Does the parent understand what their child is trying to achieve and what support they need to achieve it?
• Is the parent being the best role model they can be to help their child enjoy their golfing experience?
• Is the parent focused on their child’s development and enjoyment?

Emergency Action/First Aid
All officials/coaches, leaders working directly with juniors should be prepared with an action plan in the event of an emergency and be aware of our First Aid Procedures.
This will include:
Access to First Aid equipment
Telephone contact if the participant is a minor
Telephone contact to the Emergency Services

Do you agree to abide by the guidelines contained
in Golf’s Safeguarding Policy? Yes [  ] No [  ]

Have you ever been asked to leave a sporting organisation? Yes [  ] No [  ]
(If you have answered yes, we will contact you in confidence)

Is there any reason you should not be working with young Yes [  ] No [  ]
people or have you ever been convicted of a criminal offence or been the subject of a caution; a Bound Over Order; or are you at present the subject of criminal investigations? Yes [  ] No [  ]
(If you have answered yes, we will contact you in confidence)

______________________________ _______________________________ ______________________
Printed name of official/coach/volunteer Signature of official/coach/volunteer Date

Appendix 4
Code of Conduct for Juniors
Golf wishes to provide the best possible environment for all juniors involved in the sport. Juniors deserve to be given enjoyable, safe sporting opportunities, free of abuse of any kind. These participants have rights, which must be respected, and responsibilities that they must accept. Juniors should be encouraged to realise that they have responsibilities to treat other participants and Golf Leaders with fairness and respect.

Juniors are entitled to:
Be safe and to feel safe
Be listened to and believed
Have fun and enjoy golf
Have a voice in relation to their activities within golf
Be treated with dignity, sensitivity and respect
Participate on an equitable and fair manner, regardless of gender, appearance, age, ability, religion or belief, disability, social and ethnic background or political persuasion etc.
Experience competition at a level at which they feel comfortable
Make complaints and have them dealt with
Be safe from risk of bullying behaviour
Say No to things that make them feel unsafe
Privacy and Confidentiality

Juniors should always:
Give their friends a second chance
Treat Golf Leaders with respect, (including professionals, coaches, convenors, club officials, etc.)
Look out for themselves and the welfare of others
Play fairly at all times, do their best
Be organised and on time, tell someone if you are leaving a venue or competition
Respect team members, even when things go wrong
Respect opponents, be gracious in defeat
Abide by the rules set down by team managers when travelling to away events, representing the club, school, province or country, etc.
Behave in a manner that avoids bringing golf into disrepute
Talk to the Children’s Officer within the club if they have any problems

Juniors should never:
Use violence or engage in irresponsible, abusive, inappropriate or illegal behaviour
Shout or argue with officials, team mates or opponents
Harm team members, opponents or their property
Bully or use bullying tactics to isolate another player or gain advantage
Take banned substances, drink alcohol, smoke or engage inappropriate sexual behaviour
Keep secrets, that may leave them or others at risk
Tell lies about adults / juniors or spread rumours
Discriminate against other players on the basis of gender, appearance, age, ability, religion or belief, disability, social and ethnic background or political persuasion

______________________ ________________________
Printed name of junior Signature of Junior
______________________ ________________________
Printed name of Parent/Guardian Signature of Parent/Guardian
Date _______________
Appendix 5
Parental/Guardian Consent Form

Please complete this form with a parent/guardian
Parental/guardian consent from
Full Name of Player: ___________________________________________________________________________

Address: ____________________________________________________________________________________

Date of Birth: ______________________________________

Home Telephone: ______________________________________

Players Mobile No (in case of emergency1): ___________________________________

Parent(s) Mobile(s): ______________________________________________

Players E-Mail1: ______________________________________

Parents E-mail(s): ______________________________________________




Please include all medical details that might be relevant in dealing with your child in a safe manner, such as allergies, medication, dietary, special needs, etc.

Date of last Tetanus Injection: ____________________________________________________

Doctors Name, address and contact phone number: ____________________________________


Full Name of Parent/Guardian: ______________________________________

Address (if different from above): ______________________________________

Home Telephone(if different from above): ____________________________________

Name and mobile number of alternative adult to be contacted in case of emergency: __________________________________________________________________________________________

I am the Parent/guardian of: _______________________________

I hereby consent to the above child participating in golf activities of the Union in line with Golf’s Safeguarding Policy.
I confirm that all details are correct and I am able to give parental consent for my child to participate in and travel to all activities.
I am happy for me, and my child, to receive appropriate communication through text and email.
I understand that photographs/videos will be taken during or at golf related events and may be used in the promotion of golf, including social media.
If selected for teams, I confirm I am happy with the travel arrangements the Union may arrange for my child.
I acknowledge that the Union is not responsible for providing adult supervision for my child except for formal junior coaching, matches and competitions.
I understand and agree that my son/daughter in my care be bound by the above Code of Conduct whilst representing the Unions and I absolve all its representatives from all liability and/or claims for illness, injuries and damage that may arise directly as a result of my son/daughter breaching conditions set out in this document.

I will inform the coaches/designated liaison person of any important changes to my child’s health, medication or needs and also of any changes to our address or phone numbers given.  In the event of illness, having parental responsibility for the above named child, I give permission for medical treatment to be administered where considered necessary by a nominated first aider, or by suitably qualified medical practitioners. If I cannot be contacted and my child should require emergency hospital treatment, I authorise a qualified medical practitioner to provide emergency treatment or medication.

SIGNATURE OF PARENT/ GUARDIAN: ________________________________________

PRINT NAME OF PARENT/GUARDIAN: ________________________________________

DATE: _____________

Guidelines for Parents/Guardian- Appendix 6
As a parent/guardian of a junior member, we would encourage you to consider the following messages as Golf wants to help you continue supporting your child to reach their full potential and enjoy their time within golf, therefore please

To help your child have a positive experience remember to:
Focus on what your child wants to get out of golf
Be the best role model you can be
Help your child achieve their potential
Be respectful of other children and coaches
Communicate with the coach and club/organisation

Parents are expected to co-sign their child’s code of conduct form and this specific parental expectation form.
Golf and its affiliated organisations believe that parents should:
Be a role model for your child and maintain the highest standards of conduct when interacting with juniors, other parents, officials and organizers.
Always behave responsibly and do not seek to unfairly affect a player or the outcome of the game
Never intentionally expose any junior to embarrassment or disparagement using flippant or sarcastic remarks.
Always recognize the value and importance of the officials and volunteers who provide sporting and recreational opportunities for your child. Do not publicly question the judgement or honesty of referees, coaches or organisers. Respect convenors, professionals, coaches, referees, orgainsers and other players. Parents are welcome to attend events and coaching sessions but should not interfere with the coach or professional while working with the player.
Encourage your child to play by the rules. Teach your child that honest endeavor is as important as winning and do all you can to encourage good sportsmanship.
Set a good example by applauding good play. Encourage mutual respect for teammates and opponents.
Parents should support all efforts to remove abusive behavior and bullying behavior in all its forms. Please refer to Anti-bullying policy guidance (appendix 8)
The rules and procedures set down by Golf.
My child’s teammates and leaders as well as players, parents and coaches from opposing  teams.
I will never demonstrate threatening or abusive behavior or use foul language.

Any misdemeanours and breach of this code of conduct will be dealt with immediately by a Golf official. Persistent concerns or breaches will result in the parent/guardian being asked not to attend competitions if their attendance is detrimental to the child’s welfare.

_____________________ _______________________ __________
Signature of Parent/Guardian Printed name of Parent/Guardian Date

Appendix 7
Players selected to represent golf agreement

You have been selected to represent your Country and/or Province. As a result, you must show the highest standard of behaviour – on and off the golf course. You are an ambassador for your Country and/or Province, and for the game of golf in general. It is important that you understand what is required of you at all times when representing your Country and/or Province.
You should be safe and feel safe while representing the GUI/ILGU/CGI. Team Captains and Managers are there to help you. If you have any problems, you should talk to the Team Captain and/or Manager. You can expect to have all concerns listened to, and to have any problems treated with confidentiality.

Code of Conduct – What you must commit to:
To observe any instructions or restrictions requested by your Team Captain or Manager
To behave to the highest standard both on and off the golf course
To behave in a sporting manner at all times
To comply with the GUI/ILGU/CGI Social Media Policy (available from National Headquarters)
To display a professional attitude, and to be organized, prepared and properly dressed
To arrive promptly for all meetings as directed by the Team Captain or Manager
To report all incidents, no matter how trivial, to the Team Captain or Manager
To adhere to all travel arrangements made for you by the GUI/ILGU/CGI
Never to be absent from the golf course, golf club or accommodation without the express permission of the Team Captain/Team Manager.
Never to leave your room at night without the permission of the Team Captain / Team Manager
Never to use bad language either on or off the golf course
Never to use any drug (performance enhancing or recreational substance)
Never cheat
Smoking and drinking of alcohol by players on an under 18 team is strictly forbidden.

I understand the points above.
I understand that if I breach this Code of Conduct, or behave in a manner which, in the view of the Team Captain or Manager, damages the GUI/ILGU/CGI, I may be withdrawn from the event and sent home.
I agree to accept all the points above, as well as all reasonable instructions and requests made by the Team Captain or Manager, at all times.

SIGNATURE OF PLAYER: ______________________________________

PRINT NAME: ______________________________________

DATE: _______________________________________

Golf Anti-Bullying Policy and Guidance – Appendix 8
What is Bullying Behaviour
Bullying behaviour can be defined as unwanted negative behaviour, verbal, psychological or physical, conducted by an individual or group against another person (or persons) and which is repeated over time.

Types of Bullying Behaviour
Bullying behaviour exists in many different forms, some are not as obvious as others, but are just as damaging to the victim. Listed below are some of the more common types of bullying, one or more method may be used by the person displaying bullying behaviour.

Physical bullying includes any physical contact that would hurt or injure a person like pushing, hitting, kicking, punching, tripping, etc. Physical bullying can put the person experiencing bullying behaviour at risk of injury and makes them feel powerless. Taking something that belongs to someone else and destroying it would also be considered a type of physical bullying.

Verbal bullying usually takes the form of name-calling or making nasty remarks or jokes about a person's religion, gender, appearance, sexuality, ethnicity, socio-economic status, or the way they look. It can also include freezing the victim out by exclusion or spreading rumours.

Making threats against a person or their property is also a type of bullying. It can be a threat to damage or take something belonging to the victim or to hurt them physically. Often the threat is not actually carried out, but the fear created by the threat can be enough to upset the person experiencing bullying behaviour.

Cyber bullying is done by sending messages, pictures, or information using electronic media, computers (email & instant messages), mobile phones (text messaging & voicemail) and social networking websites. This activity can be upsetting and harmful to the person targeted. This type of bullying can allow the person who is displaying bullying behaviour to hide their identity which may have a bigger impact on the person experiencing bullying behaviour.

Homophobic bullying is motivated by prejudice against a person’s actual or perceived sexual orientation and gender identity- lesbians, gay males, bisexual, transsexual, or transgender people.

Racist bullying is motivated by prejudice against a person’s skin colour, cultural or religious background or ethnic origin.

The Impact of Bullying behaviour
The damage inflicted by bullying behaviour can frequently be underestimated. It can cause considerable distress to juniors, to the extent it effects their health and development, or at the extreme, causes them significant harm.

Recognising Bullying Behaviour
There are a number of signs that may indicate a person is being bullied:
Reluctance to come to a venue or take part in activities
Physical signs (unexplained bruises, scratches, or damage to belongings)
Stress-caused illness – headaches, and stomach aches which seem unexplained
Fearful behaviour (fear of walking to a meeting, going different routes, asking to be driven)
Frequent loss of, or shortage of, money with vague explanations
Having few friends or drop out of newer members
Changes in behaviour (withdrawn, stammering, moody, irritable, upset, distressed, not eating, reduced concentration, drop in performance)
Anxiety (shown by nail-biting, fearfulness, tics)

This list is not exhaustive and there are other possible reasons for many of the above. The presence of one or more of these indicators is not proof that bullying is actually taking place

How to prevent Bullying Behaviour
Ensure that all members follow the Code of Conduct, which promotes the rights and dignity of each member
Deal with any incidents as soon as they arise
Use a whole group policy or ‘no-blame approach’, i.e. working with person(s) displaying the bullying behaviour and the group of juniors, helping them to understand the hurt they are causing, and so make the problem a ‘shared concern’ of the group
Encourage juniors to negotiate, co-operate and help others, particularly new or children with specific needs
Offer the person experiencing bullying behaviour immediate support and put the ‘no blame approach’ into operation
Never tell a young person to ignore bullying, they can’t ignore it, it hurts too much
Never encourage a young person to take the law into their own hands and beat the person(s) displaying the bullying behaviour at his/her own game
Reassure the person experiencing bullying behaviour they have done nothing wrong. Reinforce that there is ‘a right to tell’ culture within the club

Who should deal with bullying?
While the more extreme forms of bullying would be regarded as physical or emotional abuse and are reported to the Statutory Authorities, dealing with bullying behaviour is normally the responsibility of all Leaders within golf. You should also liaise with the appropriate National Children’s Officer & DLP.

Using the NO BLAME Approach
The NO BLAME approach seeks to find a resolution for the young people involved in the bullying behaviour whilst maintaining their relationship within the club or the group.

This is important for young people who often simply want the behaviour to stop, without a need for punishments to be imposed.

The NO BLAME approach encourages young people to recognise the impact of their behaviour and then to take responsibility for changing it. By using this approach, a previous relationship between or within a team can often be re-established; this is often a preferred option for the young people involved.

The ethos behind the NO BLAME approach is to:
EXPLAIN the problem, i.e. that someone seems to be unhappy in the club, seems to be picked on etc. and explain how that person is feeling; this should not accuse anyone.

ASK for ideas as to how to help this person

LEAVE the individuals involved to check how the behaviour has changed

SHARE the responsibility of changing the behaviour and encouraging everyone to speak to a trusted adult if there is bullying behaviour in the club

The NO BLAME approach does not attempt to get ‘confessions’, it seeks to get an acknowledgement of behaviour and provides an opportunity for young people to change hurtful behaviour.

There may be issues that are not resolved through the NO BLAME approach, where behaviour continues.
Bullying behaviour is a breach of a code of conduct and may have to be dealt with through a disciplinary process. However, the outcome for young people is far better when issues can be resolved through the NO BLAME approach.


If you find that there has been an incident of bullying behaviour, first talk to the young person who is the target of the behaviour. At this stage find out who was involved and what the young person is now feeling. Try asking the following questions:
What was the behaviour that has caused upset?
Are you emotionally/physically hurt and/or how are you feeling?
Who was involved in the behaviour, i.e. was it in your own peer group?
When and where did it happen?
Make sure you actively listen and advise the young person of the next steps that will be taken

Arrange to meet with all those involved; this should include those who initiated the bullying behaviour, some of the backup and if necessary you might want to ask the audience.
The meeting should be informal, and it is better to try to meet the individuals before meeting as a group. If you meet with a group keep the number controllable and you should only deal with the topic. Make sure everyone knows you are there to get their point of view and find their solutions.

Talk about the hurt caused in general terms without apportioning blame, e.g. you might suggest the target of the bullying behaviour doesn’t seem to be happy in the club, and you have heard they have been called names/left out/picked on etc. It might be helpful to ask questions like:
What do you think they are feeling?
How would you feel if it was you?
What would you do if it happened to you?
What could we do to see it does not happen again?
You should not use specific details of the incident or allocate blame, however explain the feelings of loneliness, feeling left out, being rejected, laughed at and how that the person may be feeling.
Listen and watch out for reactions and pick up on comments without accusing or if in a group without isolating anyone; this is an opportunity to find out how others in the group feel about bullying behaviour.

At this stage the group or individual is encouraged to suggest ways that would make a target of the bullying behaviour feel happier. Use phrases like: “if it were you what would help you….”, to encourage a response.
Listen to all suggestions and note them, especially positive responses as these will help create an environment for young people involved to work together.

Now the problem has been identified and solutions suggest it is now handed over to the group/individual to act on. Arrange what actions they will take and to meet again a certain time frame. You have now passed the responsibility over to the group or the individual to take the suggested action within that time.

Meet everyone, including the person who had been responsible for the bullying behaviour and the target of the behaviour; discuss how things are going and check if there have been other incidents.
This allows for continual monitoring and keeps everyone involved in the process.
The parents of the young people involved should be informed of the actions taken.

Meet with the wider group or team to discuss what should be in place to help prevent further incidents and what impact bullying behaviour may have on everyone, e.g. less free time or social activities, or other actions might need to be imposed as a preventative measure.
Any action should be used in the spirit of prevention, not as a punishment.

Useful Contacts
Childline UK  Tel: 0800 1111  
Childline ROI  Tel: 1800 66 66 66 or Text Talk to 50101

Appendix 9
Photographic Image Guidelines
Using photographs and videos of children and young people in golf for publication, promotion, press, or for coaching purposes.
This guidance is for anyone with responsibility for developing policies and procedures about the use and publication of official photography (including videos) of children involved in sports activities or events.

Golf clubs benefit from using images of young participants to promote and celebrate activities, events and competitions. Parents and children generally welcome opportunities to celebrate or publicise their achievements. Some sports coaches may want to use photographs or videos as a tool to support a young athlete’s skill development.

However, the use of photos and videos on websites and social media, and in posters, the press or other publications, can pose direct and indirect risks to children and young people if not managed correctly.

Organisations wishing to use or permit the use of images of children involved in their activities must therefore have a policy in place to safeguard them.

What are the risks?
Children may be identified, located, groomed2 or contacted
Including the child's personal identity (full name, address) can make them identifiable and therefore vulnerable to individuals looking to locate, contact and 'groom' children for abuse.

Even if these details are kept confidential, any other details accompanying the images (such as the organisation, school or club they belong to, or their favourite sports person or team) can also be used to groom the child.

This also increases the risk of identification of, and contact with, a child by someone in circumstances where there are legal restrictions or this could otherwise be potentially harmful. For example if the child is in statutory care or placed in an adoptive family; or where it is potentially dangerous to reveal the child’s whereabouts to an estranged parent due to previous concerns about domestic violence.      
Taking or producing inappropriate or illegal images of children
Photo or video content may themselves be inappropriate (for example images of children changing); or images may be used inappropriately, or out of context. Images can easily be copied and adapted, perhaps to create child abuse images, which can then find their way into the public domain on websites or social media.

Potential impact on children affected
The effects on children and young people of grooming or sexually abusive experiences can be devastating and life changing. Young people who have experienced online grooming or whose images have been misused and/or shared through social media often find this as traumatic and damaging as other, more direct, forms of sexual abuse.

There have been instances where identification of children through images and information appearing in public media have resulted in the breakdown of children’s foster or adoptive family placements due to the intervention of adults who have subsequently traced them. Some children have also been put at risk when identified and traced by adults (known to them or not) with bad intent.

How can the risks be minimised?
Think carefully before using any images showing children and young people on your website, social media, or in your publications.
Establish the type of images that present the activity in a positive light, and promote the best aspects of the sport and organisation.
Avoid supplying the full name(s) of the child or children along with the image(s), unless this is considered necessary, is in the child’s best interests, and the child and parent have consented.
Only use images of children in suitable dress/kit.
Where possible images of these activities should:
focus on the activity rather than a particular child
avoid images and camera angles that may be more prone to misinterpretation or misuse than others.                                     
Consider using models or illustrations if you are promoting an activity, rather than the children who are actually involved in it.
Link to guidance on talented young athletes and open, public sites (below)
Provide coaches who wish to use images of young athletes for development purposes with clear guidelines they are required to comply with. Cover: consents, retention, safe storage, confidentiality, and use.

What to do when using official/professional photographers
Ensure that children and parents are aware that a photographer will be active at the event, and consent has been obtained.
Check the photographer’s identity, the validity of their role, and the purpose/use of the images to be taken.
Issue the photographer with identification, which must be worn at all times.
Provide the photographer with a clear brief about what is considered appropriate in terms of image content and their behaviour (as above)*.
Clarify areas where all photography is prohibited (toilets, changing areas, and so on)
Inform the photographer about how to identify and avoid taking images of children without the required parental photography consent (this will depend on the process in place at each event) *.
Do not allow unsupervised access to children or one-to-one photo sessions at events*.
Do not allow photo sessions away from the event, for instance at a young person's home*.
Clarify issues about ownership of and access to all images, and for how long they will be retained and/or used
*(establish/clarify during commissioning/contracting process).   
Do I need parental permission?
Close up images
Organisers should seek parents’ consent to take and use images of individual or smaller groups of participants in which their child would easily be recognisable.
Parents should understand how, where and in what context an image may be used (for example on a public website, through social media, or in a printed resource).

They should be aware of and support your policy on using children's images, and of the way these represent the organisation or activity.

This can be recorded on a parental consent form for use of images of children, possibly as part of the process for registering and consenting the child’s participation in the activity/event.

You should also ask for the child's permission to use their image. This ensures that they are aware of the way the image is to be used to represent the activity. A children's permission form is one way of recording their consent.

Examples of consent forms are available on the Child Protection in Sport Unit website.

When using a photographer (even if this is undertaken by someone already involved in the club or activity) inform parents and children that a photographer will be in attendance and ensure they consent to both the taking and publication of films or photos.

General (e.g. wide angle) images of events
At many events organisers will quite reasonably wish to take wide angle, more general, images of the event, site/s, opening and closing ceremonies, and so on. It is usually not reasonable, practical or proportionate to secure consents for every participating child in order to take such images, or to preclude such photography on the basis of the concerns of a small number of parents.

In these circumstances organisers should (before and during the event) make clear to all participants and parents that these kinds of images will be taken, and for what purposes.

Talented young athletes
As young athletes progress up the competitive ladder within their sport, elite level events are increasingly likely to take place in a public arena. Event organisers and golfing organisation will quite reasonably seek publicity to positively promote their activity, and elite young athletes receiving endorsements or sponsorship may well welcome positive media coverage on a local, regional or national level.

In this case some aspects of the guidance around the use of images detailed above (for example avoiding the inclusion of names and some other personal details alongside photographs) are neither practical nor desirable. Organisers retain their duty of care to these athletes and a responsibility to safeguard them, and must ensure that parents and young athletes understand and consent to images being taken and information used in these circumstances.

It is important that other practice guidance (for example about the nature, content and use of images; and about ensuring that photography sessions are supervised) are still considered and applied. It is important for the athletes, their parents and media representatives to be clear about appropriate arrangements and ground rules for interviews, filming and photo sessions.

Young elite athletes and their parents will be supported by the golfing organisations and prepared to manage these and a range of other issues (including safeguarding concerns) that may arise as a result of their sporting success and increased public profile.

Parents of high performance young people should contact their golfing union for, guidance and support to help athletes manage the media, for example in planning for media interviews.

When parental consent is not given
Organisers have a responsibility to put in place arrangements to ensure that any official/professional photographers can identify or be informed about which children should not be subject to close-up photography.
This could involve providing some type of recognisable badge, sticker or wrist band (perhaps a different colour to ‘consented’ young people – ideally something easily recognisable but not stigmatising for the child), and/or a system for photographers to check with the activity organiser and/or team manager to clarify which groups or individuals should not feature in images. It must be emphasised to any photographer that the use of images with these ‘unconsented’ children included will not be permitted.  
How should I respond to concerns?
All staff, volunteers, children and parents should be informed that if they have any concerns regarding inappropriate or intrusive photography (in terms of the way, by whom, or where photography is being undertaken), these should be reported to the event organiser or another official.

There must be an appropriate safeguarding policy and procedure in place to ensure that any reported concerns are dealt with in the same way as any other child protection issue, ensuring that your club/event or lead child protection or safeguarding officer is informed. If there are concerns or suspicions about potentially criminal behaviour this should include referral to the police.

Concerns about professional photographers should also be reported to their employers.

Visit for further information on;
Photography by parents/spectators at events  
Photography in changing rooms/showers

Information adapted with permission from the Child Protection in Sport Unit

Appendix 10 (a)
Standard Report Form for ROI

Appendix 10 (b)
Standard Report Form for NI
(For reporting Safeguarding and poor Practice Concerns)
Incident record form : Safeguarding
Name of Club
Record completed by:
Child/Young Persons Name:

Child/Young Persons Address:

Child/Young Persons Date of Birth:

Parents/Guardian’s Names and Address:

Date and time of any incident:
Date: Time:
Your Observations:

Detail exactly what the child/young person said and what you said :
(Remember do not lead the child/young person – record actual details. Continue on a separate sheet if necessary)

Action taken so far:

Designated Liaison Person informed? Yes No
External Agencies contacted
Yes No
Details of advice received:

Contact no:

Social Services/Gateway
Yes No
Details of advice received:


Sports Governing Body
Yes No

Details of advice received:


Local Council or Education Authority (if appropriate)
Yes No
Org name:
Details of advice received:


Other (e.g. NSPCC)
Yes No
Details of advice received:


___________________________________ _________________________
Signature Date

Remember to maintain confidentiality on a need to know basis – only if it will protect the child/young person. Do not discuss this incident with anyone other than those who need to know.

N.B. A copy of this form should be sent to social services after the telephone report and to the governing body Designated Liaison Person for monitoring purposes.

Appendix 11 - Useful Contacts

CGI National Children’s Officer &DLP – Fiona Power +353(0)1 505 2070
GUI National Children’s Officer & DLP – Barbara Creggy +353(0)1 505 4000
ILGU National Children’s Officer & DLP - Audrey Quinn +353(0)1 293 4833
PGA Lead Compliance and Safeguarding Officer – Andy Wright +44(0)1675 477 897

ISPCC/Childine 1800 66 66 66
NSPCC/Childline 0800 11 11
Child Protection in Sport Unit

An Garda Síochána 999 or 112
PSNI 999

Contact details for Social Workers ROI

Dublin North East
Eilidh MacNab
Child and Family Agency,
180-189 Lakeshore Drive,
Airside Business Park,  
Swords, Co Dublin.
Tel: 01-8708000

Joy McGlynn
Child and Family Agency,
Dublin North City,
Ballymun Healthcare Facility,
Ballymun Civic Centre,
Dublin 9.
Tel 01-8467129

Grainne Sullivan
Child and Family Agency,
Gilligan House,
C/O Community Care Centre,
Dublin Road,
Tel 042-9381282

Gerry Lowry
Child and Family Agency,
Support Services Building,
Tel 047-30473

Dublin Mid Leinster
Dublin South East/ Wicklow
Joanne Cullen
Child and Family Agency,
Dublin South East / Wicklow,
PO Box 12639,
Dublin 8.
Tel 01-4150533

Dublin South Central
Doreen McGowan
Child and Family Agency,
Dublin South Central,
Cherry Orchard Hospital,
Dublin 10.
Tel 01-076 6955792

Dublin South West, Kildare, West Wicklow
Sarah Clarke
Child and Family Agency,
Dublin South West, Kildare, West Wicklow,
Poplar House,
Poplar Square,
Co Kildare.
Tel 045-907891

Midlands (Laois, Longford, Offaly & Westmeath)
Annette Maguire
Child and Family Agency,
Mullingar Health Centre,
Longford Road,
Co Westmeath.
Tel 044-9395019/5020

Oliver Mawe
Child and Family Agency,
Co Kerry.
Tel 066-7195620

Barry Murray
Child and Family Agency,
Ground Floor,
Áras Sláinte,
Wilton Road,
Tel 021-4923503

Carlow, Kilkenny & South Tipperary
Marie Kennedy
Child and Family Agency,
Carlow/Kilkenny/South Tipperary,
Community Services,
James Green,
Tel 056 - 7784713

Waterford & Wexford
Vincent Daly
Child and Family Agency,
Community Services,
Cork Road,
Tel 051-842880

Michael Gallagher
Child and Family Agency,
Euro House,
Killybegs Road,
Donegal Town.
Tel 074 9743026

Galway and Rosommon
Angela Toolis
Child and Family Agency,
25 Newcastle Road,
Tel 091 546128

Sligo, Leitrim and West Cavan
Gerry Hone
Office of the Area Manager,
Child and Family Agency,
Sligo/Leitrim/West Cavan,
Shiel House, College Street,
Co Donegal.
Tel 071 9822776

Paddy Martin
Child and Family Agency,
2nd Floor, Mill Lane,
Bridge Street,
Co Mayo.
Tel 094 9042030  

Mid West (Limerick, Clare and North Tipperary)
Ger Brophy
Child and Family Agency,
Mid West,
Ballycummin Ave,
Raheen Business Park,
Tel 061-482792

Contact Details for Social Workers NI – Health and Social Care Trust – Gateway
Belfast Health and Social Care Trust
Regional Emergency Social Work Service
Child Protection Services
If you are concerned about the safety or wellbeing of a child call Gateway to Children’s Social Work Service:
During Office Hours
028 9050 7000
Out of hours, weekends and public holidays
028 9504 9999

Southern Health and Social Care Trust
Child Protection Services
If you are concerned about the safety or wellbeing of a child call Gateway to Children’s Social Work Service:
During Office Hours
028 3741 5285 or Freephone 0800 783 7745

Northern Health and Social Care Trust
Child Protection Services, Antrim, Moyle, Ballyclare, Ballymena, Ballymoney, Carrickfergus, Coleraine, Cookstown, Glengormley, Larne, Magherafelt, Newtownabbey areas.
If you are concerned about the safety or wellbeing of a child call Gateway to Children’s Social Work Service:
During Office Hours
0300 1234 333
Out of hours, weekends and public holidays
028 9446 8833 or 028 9504 9999

Western Health and Social Care Trust
Child Protection Services, Derry, Limavady, Strabane, Omagh and Enniskillen areas.
If you are concerned about the safety or wellbeing of a child call Gateway to Children’s Social Work Service:
During Office Hours
028 7131 4090
Out of hours, weekend and public holidays
028 95 049 999

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