Safeguarding Clubs

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Sara Lane

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In a very interactive first AU Sport Council meeting hosted by David Penn, AU Sport President, club reps were presented with an update on AU Sport matters form Michelle Wilson, General Manager.

Sara Lane, Sports Development Officer, also presented on ‘Safeguarding Clubs’ and provided updates on a number of different elements that need to be addressed by all AU Sport Clubs to ensure that they are safe for ALL.

The University has been working hard to ensure a safer campus community in terms of sexual harassment and assault, which is also needed to be considered by sporting clubs. As part of the University’s Respect. Now. Always. project, the University reviewed AU Sports policies and procedures at the end of 2018 and were pleased with what is in place. Clubs were remaindered that they should have similar processes and controls in place.

Tailored support resources for dealing with someone in distress has been developed by the University, will be added to an updated Risk Management Critical Incident Plan Template, which will be available for clubs to use all event and major activities.

It was highlighted that the best way to deal with issues of this nature is to create positive interventions, set boundaries, define expectations of behaviour and call people out when they have crossed the line. Clubs were encouraged to define their values and create an environment where positive peer pressure influences the behaviour of the few who are unsure of what is acceptable.
Sara also explained the new process for club volunteers who manage juniors on the changed process for volunteers to access free Working with Children Checks via AU Sport. She noted that AU Sport would also work with clubs who have a Liquor Licence, to ensure that they are meet the forthcoming change in legislation.

It was also great to see a number of Club Presidents, volunteer their club to be involved in the new ‘Event Reporting’ pilot project which AU Sport is looking to implement across all clubs. The reason behind such a process is to ensure that club events are managed well, meeting basic duty of care requirements and are in line with AU Sport and the University’s standards. Until this process is rolled out, clubs were asked to consider if their current club events are in line with their club values? Are they a positive promotion of their club, AU Sport and the University? Are you providing the best duty of care to your members and the public?’

Sara’s presentation was received well and was a thought provoker for those who attended.

The next council meeting will be held on May 27th.

Key links:
Respect. Now. Always.
Working with Children