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Sport can and does have a very powerful and positive influence on people - especially children, young people and protected adults. Not only can sport provide opportunities for enjoyment and achievement, it can also help those who participate to develop valuable qualities and skills such as self-esteem, leadership and teamwork. These positive effects can only take place if sport is in the right hands i.e. in the hands of those who place the welfare of all children, young people and protected adults first and adopt practices that support, protect and empower them.

This document provides an overview of key details from the Scottish Gymnastics policy document, encompassing an overall Child Protection Policy, Safe Recruitment Policy and a Code of Ethics for all members of Scottish Gymnastics.

Stonehaven Gymnastics Club (SGC) constitutionally adopts the policy outlined by Scottish Gymnastics which is available in full on their website or from their registered offices. This document provides an abridged review of key points within the above policy document relevant to the running of the club on a day-to-day basis, with additional club specific procedures and policies. In any instance, the most update full Scottish Gymnastics Policy on Child Protection and Welfare will inform both the recommended and legal obligations of The Club’s operations.

SGC and Scottish Gymnastics accept that the welfare and safety of children, young people and protected adults is the responsibility of everyone in the sport, whether paid staff or volunteer. As an club we are committed to understanding and adhering to the policies and procedures set by SG and to planning the relevant training opportunities to ensure those working within the club adopt best practice and that at all times no child, young person, protected adult, coach or official is placed at risk.

This policy will apply to all children and young people up to the age of 18 as well as protected adults.

A “child” is defined as anyone less than 16 years of age:

• 16 to 18 year olds: Young people aged 16 to 18 years are sometimes classified as children in Scotland. In terms of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995, a 16 to 18 year old will be regarded as a child if he/she is subject to a supervision requirement through a Children's Hearing.

• For the purposes of Part V of the Police Act 1997 a child is defined as anyone under the age of 18 years.

The term “protected adult” refers to any person aged 16 or over whom for the time being:

Is unable to safeguard his/her own welfare or properly manage his/her financial affairs, and is in one or more of the following categories:

• A person in need of care and attention by reason of either infirmity or the effects of ageing

• A person suffering from an illness or mental disorder

• A person substantially handicapped by a disability

Protected adults may be in need of health or social support services and may be unable either to take care of themselves and/or to protect themselves from harm or exploitation.

A number of studies suggest that children and protected adults are at increased risk of abuse. Various factors contribute to this such as stereotyping, prejudice, discrimination, isolation and a powerlessness to protect themselves, or adequately communicate that abuse has occurred.

Key Principles

The key principles that underwrite this policy are:

• The welfare of all children and protected adults is paramount


• All children and protected adults whatever their age, culture, ability, disability, gender, language, racial origin, parental status, religious belief and/or sexual identity or socio/economic background have the right to protection from harm.


• All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately


• It is everyone’s responsibility to promote and safeguard the welfare of children and protected adults.


• Clubs and other organisations will be provided with the appropriate documentation, education/training and support to ensure the implementation of relevant polices from Scottish Gymnastics as the Governing Body.


• Adults working with children are provided with opportunities for education and training to ensure best practice becomes the norm

• Working in partnership with children and their parents/carers is essential for the protection of the child.

• SGC and SG recognise the statutory responsibility of Local Authority Social Work and Police Departments to ensure the welfare of children and it is committed to complying with Local Area Child Protection Procedures.


Guidance & Legislation


The Scottish Gymnastics Child Protection Policy and supporting procedures are based on the following legislation and guidance:


• Legal Framework Children (Scotland) Act 1995


• Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995 Police Act 1997


• Sex Offenders Act 1997

• Human Rights Act 1998


• Data Protection Act 1998


• Sexual Offences (amendments) Act 2000


• Disclosure Scotland Code of Conduct “Making Scotland Safer” 2002


• Disclosure Scotland Code of Conduct “Protecting the Vulnerable by Safer Recruitment”

• Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, the Exclusions and Exceptions (Scotland) order 2003


• Protection of Children (Scotland) Act 2003


• Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act 2007


Roles and Responsibilities

Scottish Gymnastics strives to ensure that children, young people and protected adults are protected and kept safe from harm whilst participating in gymnastics activities. We will endeavour to promote the highest standards of care for participants. For effective implementation of this policy all gymnastics providers must work in partnership, each with a role to ensure the protection of the children and protected adults in their care.

Scottish Gymnastics defines their role as follows:

• Provide and implement robust procedures, support and guidance to safeguard the well being of all participants.


• Strive to ensure everyone understands their roles and responsibilities in respect of safeguarding and protecting children and

protected adults.


• Strive to ensure a culture of listening to and engaging in dialogue with children


• Develop appropriate whistle blowing procedures and a culture that enables issues about the protection of children and protected adults to be addressed.


• Adopt best practice in recruitment and training of employees and volunteers

• Require all clubs registered with SGA and all members adopt the Association’s Child Protection Policy.


• Require all clubs to adhere to the Association’s Safe Recruitment Policy


• Require all those who work with children including those who act in a pastoral role whilst on trips, to attend child protection training


• Respond to all allegations and concerns, swiftly and appropriately.


• Initiate Disciplinary proceedings when necessary


• Provide Education, Training and Support to the Child Protection Co-ordinators and to Clubs

• Monitor the operation of this policy


Stonehaven Gymnastics Club commits to support SG. policies in the following manner:


• Adhere to the guidelines and procedures contained within this policy


• Appoint a Child Protection Co-ordinator


• Ensure all those coming into the club to work with children and protected adults regardless of whether in a paid or voluntary capacity, are Safely Recruited in accordance with the SGA Recruitment Policy

• Accept that all Office and Committee members also have a responsibility in this area and be prepared to respond to any indication of abuse


• Be prepared to challenge and alter bad practice


• Implement any recommendations of SGA relating to this area


• Promote an open door policy


• Promote an environment where all legitimate concerns can be raised without fear of victimisation or reprisal


• Ensure all those working with children including those who act in a pastoral role whilst on trips; attend the relevant SGA organised Child Protection Course.


• Ensure that the SG’s equity policy is adhered to, and that discrimination is prohibited at all levels


• Maintain confidentiality, should an allegation be made, of the child and the person against whom the allegation is made


SGC will appoint a Child Protection Co-ordinator, holding a seat on the Executive Committee, who will:


• Ensure all persons working with children, young people and protected adults at the club are fully aware of what is required of them within the guidelines of the Associations Code of Practice


• Ensure all those working with children and protected adults are recruited in accordance with the Association’s Safe Recruitment



• Be the first point of contact for coaches, helpers, parents and gymnasts on any issues concerning the well-being of the club members, (poor practice or potential alleged abuse).


• Conduct the administrative work associated with the safe recruitment of coaches, helpers and officials, including criminal record checks (verify ID documentation)


• Liaise closely with the clubs trainee coaches, ensuring that the agreed procedures for the prevention of risk are followed 4


• Act as adviser, when required, to the club’s management committee on matters of policy & procedures related to Child Protection and Recruitment


• Ensure that all those working with children and protected adults attend the relevant SGA organised Child Protection Course


• Ensure that all incidents are correctly recorded and reported in accordance with SGA policy and procedures


Disclosure, Documentation and Training


All those coming into a club to work with either children or protected adults and who meet the criteria, must complete an Application and a Self-Declaration form. These can be found in the Association’s Safe Recruitment Policy. Failure to disclose information on any previous convictions may also lead to suspension of membership and subsequent inquiry.


Should someone applying to work within an SG registered club, regardless of whether in a paid or voluntary capacity, be listed or is being considered for listing either on the barred from working with children or the barred from working with protected adults list, they will be disqualified from working in the respective position with a club.


It is the duty of The Club’s CPC with support of the executive committee to complete and process applications through Scottish Gymnastics who are authorised to facilitate these record checks on our behalf. Pending the completion of the application process, a self-certification form should be completed.


In addition to PVG documentation, the following training sessions must be attended:


• Safeguarding and Protecting Children (valid for first 3 years)


• Safeguarding 2 (attended on expiry of Safeguarding and Protecting Children, and every 3 years thereafter).


The following courses are also provided by Scottish Gymnastics to support the club in its responsibilities:


• PVG Workshops – This module is mandatory for CPC officers and lead coaches and covers the processes and procedures of PVG applications.


• Safe in Our Hands – This course is available for young helpers and coaches under 18 to give an introduction child protection and welfare and discuss their role in supporting the club in this area.


Monitoring Procedures


This policy document, in line with the Scottish Gymnastics’ Child Protection policy and procedures will be regularly monitored and reviewed accordingly. The policy will also be reviewed in the following circumstances:


• As a result of any changes in legislation


• As a result of any changes in governance of the sport


• Following a procedural review as a result of a significant case




SGC and SG fundamentally believe that unlawful discrimination is unacceptable. SGC works to it’s own Equality Policy Document, created in line with the Scottish and British Gymnastics policies. This should be readily available to all SGC members.




Abuse of children can occur in any environment where there are young people, including the home, at school or in a sports club. Although children and protected adults are more likely to be abused by people they know and trust in their family, cases of abuse have occurred in gymnastics. IGC and SG acknowledge that as gymnastics provides significant access to children, it can present opportunities for individuals who want to harm children. Therefore it is vital that those who have regular contact with children recognise the signs and indicators that a child or protected adult may be being abused and know the appropriate steps to take to report these concerns.


Coaches and officials may be best placed to help in identifying concerns, and indicators of possible abuse or neglect, at an early stage and referring those concerns to SGA and the appropriate statutory organisation. Therefore, CP training provided by Scottish Gymnastics covers the types of abuse and key indicating signs. These are further noted for reference and reminder in the full Scottish Gymnastics Child Protection Policy Document. All club members working directly with children or vulnerable adults should be aware of the types of abuse and indicative signs.


All forms of child abuse involve the elements of a power imbalance, exploitation and the absence of true consent, whether they concern acts of commission or acts of omission


Types of Abuse:


• Emotional Abuse


• Neglect (including Non-organic failure to thrive)


• Physical Abuse • Sexual Abuse


• Negative Discrimination (including racism)


• Bullying


• Abuse of Position of Trust


• Grooming


Dealing with child abuse is rarely straightforward. In some cases the disturbed behaviour of the child, or an injury, may suggest that the child has been abused. In many situations, however, the signs will not be clear-cut and decisions about what action to take can be difficult.

Any concerns or complaints must be raised immediately in accordance with the club’s reporting concerns and complaints policy as noted further within this policy document.


Reporting Concerns of Abuse


Everyone has a responsibility to maintain awareness and openness with regard to child protection issues. It is acknowledged that taking appropriate action is never easy and the discovery that a member of staff or colleague is, or may be abusing a child will raise concerns and emotional feelings among other colleagues.


In the event of any concerns or complaints, the clubs CPC should be made aware immediately. If the CPC is unavailable or involved, the club Chairman or Vice Chair should be contacted.


It is the responsibility of the CPC and or Chair / Vice-chair person to respond to all allegations, complaints or concerns in a timely and responsible manner as laid out in full within the Scottish Gymnastics Child Protection Policy. SGC representatives should seek immediate support from the  Head of Child Protection at Scottish Gymnastics and work with them and any other relevant body to support the best interest of the child or vulnerable adult.


Accidents, Illness and First Aid


It is the clubs responsibility to keep a record of all existing medical conditions. This information will be sought for each member when they join the club, and updated accordingly. This information should be available to the lead coach of each session, otherwise stored confidentially by the club’s CPC and Head Coaches.


The following information is required:


• Allergies


• Existing Medical Conditions


• Current Medications (including whether the individual should carry this)


• Emergency Contact Details


In the event of illness or a medical issue, the lead session coach should contact the parents / guardians to collect the child.

All lead coaches must hold an up-to-date Emergency First Aid (1 day) qualification and therefore will take the lead in any medical emergency or first aid situation. It is noted that the decision to give emergency medical treatment may take priority over contacting parents / guardians and therefore the coach will act in loco parentis. Contact will be made with parents / guardians as soon as possible after this.


In all situations involving injury or illness, club members will be expected to adhere to the Accident and Incident Procedure available separate to this document. This procedure also notes the necessity of some situations to be reported to the club’s CPC and the SG Welfare Officer.




Implicit within this Policy is the Duty of Care that a Team Manager and/or Club has to children and protected adults when traveling to events. The following best practices are listed for club travel to and from trips including any overnight accommodation.


• SGC will appoint a team manager to oversee, amongst other things, the safety and welfare of the whole team.


• SGC will appoint a trip welfare officer (ideally the club CPC however deputised accordingly in their absence). This person will be identified to all members involved prior to travelling and shall manage the welfare of children and protected adults accordingly.


• SGC will carry a full address list, parental consent forms (which would include contact telephone numbers for all the children/protected and young adults within their team), signed medical consent form and code of conduct forms (where applicable) for each child.


• For all overnight stays, SGC will issue an additional “Trips and Travel” code of conduct document to be reviewed as part of the consent process.


• SGC will carry out adequate risk assessments on the travel and accommodation aspects of the trips including but not exclusive to; supplier of transport, safety of accommodation, medical and welfare provisions, travel disruption, contingency planning and insurance policies.


• SGC will work to the British and / or Scottish Gymnastics Policies for all trips and travel accordingly.

Coaching Best Practices


Adherence to good coaching practices, aligned with open communication with parents, children and young people should ensure that a safe and enjoyable environment is established and sustained. The duty of care commences from the point of receipt of the child to the point of return to the parent/guardian and the duty of care is non transferable. All coaches and club officials are subject to the Scottish Gymnastics Disciplinary Code, which is available for download from their web site.


Rights - Coaches should:


• Create an environment where every individual has the opportunity to participate


• Create and maintain an environment free of fear and harassment

• Recognise the rights of all athletes to be treated as individuals

• Recognise the rights of athletes to confer with other coaches and experts

• Promote the concept of a balanced lifestyle, supporting the wellbeing of the athlete both in and out of the sport

Relationships – Coaches:


• Should promote the welfare and best interest of their athletes


• Should empower athletes to be responsible for their own decisions


• Should clarify the nature of the coaching services being offered to athletes


• Should communicate and cooperate with other organisations and individuals in the best interests of athletes


• Must not engage in or tolerate behaviour that constitutes any form of abuse (physical, sexual, emotional, neglect, bullying).


Personal Standards - Coaches:


• Must be fair, honest and considerate to athletes and others in their sport


• Should project an image of health, cleanliness and efficiency


• Must be positive role models for athletes

Professional Standards - Coaches will:


• Gain NGB coaching qualifications appropriate to the level at which they coach


• Make a commitment to on-going CPD


• Be professional and accept responsibility for their actions


• Promote safe and correct practice


• Provide a safe environment that maximises benefits and minimises risks to athletes. • Make a commitment to providing a high-quality service to their athletes


Recommended Good Practice


Always work in the open when working with children to avoid situations where a coach and an individual child or protected adult cannot be observed.


• There should be at least two responsible adults present at all times during training sessions. One appropriately qualified coach plus

one other responsible adult (preferably one female and one male). The second adult does not have to be a coach but must be aged 18+.


• Care should be taken when providing manual support (spotting). Recognised/advised techniques for spotting should be used to avoid inappropriate contact.


• Where possible parents should be responsible for young children in the changing rooms or toilets. If a group of children must be supervised in the changing rooms try to ensure that adults work in pairs to supervise the children.

• Mixed teams of gymnasts should, where possible be accompanied by a male and a female coach / pastoral carer.


• Always place the safety and welfare of the participants as the highest priority.


• Behave in an exemplary manner and be a role model for excellent behaviour.

• Keep up to date with your qualifications, knowledge and technical skills.


• Only work within the level of your competence and qualifications.


• Treat all young people equally, with respect and dignity and put their welfare first, before winning. • Recognise the stage of psychological and physical development of the individual and avoid excessive training or competition.


• Motivate the participants through positive and constructive feedback.


• Create a safe environment so that participants can enjoy their activity.


Important factors for a safe and successful gymnastics flexibility programme:


• Encourage a good flexibility programme from the beginning as young children are more flexible and once a good range of movement is achieved it is easier to maintain.


• For a flexibility programme to be effective the gymnast must be motivated and want to improve in this area.


• Develop an understanding of why flexibility is essential for gymnastics. The gymnast must understand that if they do not improve / maintain their flexibility it will limit their skill development, the quality of their work and make them more susceptible to injury.


• Always remember there are a variety of ways to stretch, not just ‘hands on’ passive stretching. Situations where the gymnast is using their own body weight are usually more effective and longer lasting.


• It is important to maintain a balance between passive and active stretch. 


• Stretching must only be done in a suitably warm environment and only when the gymnast is thoroughly warmed up.


• Regular, gradual and progressive stretching with a focus on achievable and measurable targets is likely to be far more effective.


• Expectations must be consistent with all other factors related to gymnastic development i.e. age, potential, physiology and training situation.


• It is not necessary or desirable to experience extreme discomfort in order to become more flexible – in fact it is this aspect of a flexibility programme that is likely to put the gymnast off and make it less effective.


• In all situations the gymnast must be in control and able to say STOP.


To be avoided:


• Unrealistic expectations for a ‘quick fix’.


• Situations where gymnasts may feel ‘exposed’ i.e. for stretching box splits it is better to have gymnast lying on stomach as opposed to lying on back, better to have gymnasts wearing shorts etc.

• Coach stretching gymnast to the point of excessive pain or extreme discomfort.


• Exercises that place the coach and gymnast’s bodies in “close proximity” and could be considered inappropriate.


It is impossible to establish guidelines for every situation that may occur in our sport and common sense should be used at all times. If you are unsure of the appropriateness of any stretching activity do not be afraid to discuss it with someone you trust or alternatively contact the Ethics and Child Protection department at Scottish Gymnastics.


Use of photography and video recorders


There has been an increase in the misuse of sports photography and video recording within the sporting arena. Scottish Gymnastics has developed guidelines for coaches, officials and parents/guardians. These are not intended to prevent bona fide use of this equipment for family or coaching, Parents are advised to monitor their children whilst they are on the net. Scottish Gymnastics has developed guidelines on the use of internet and web.


Important Contacts

SGC Safeguarding Officer & SGC Chair

Angela Wotherspoon

Scottish Gymnastics Welfare Officer

Loran Whyte

0141 4185670

 Children 1st Safeguarding in Sport

Appendix 1: SG Guidelines for Identifying and Managing Bullying of Children and Protected Adults

In some cases of abuse it may not be an adult abusing a young person. Children and young people may also be responsible for abuse, for example, in the case of bullying. Bullying may be seen as particularly hurtful behavior usually repeated over a period of time, where it is difficult for those bullied to defend themselves. ‘Kidscape’ (, a UK charity established specifically to prevent bullying and child sexual abuse, defines bullying as the use of aggression with the intention of hurting another person that results in pain and distress to the victim.


Bullying can take many forms including:


• Emotional - being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting (e.g. hiding belongings, threatening gestures)

• Physical - pushing, theft, kicking, hitting, punching or any use of violence


• Racist - racial taunts, graffiti, gestures, harassment e.g. using abusive or insulting behavior in a manner intended to cause alarm or distress.


• Sexual - unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive comments


• Homophobic - because of, or focusing on the issue of sexuality


• Verbal - name-calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours, teasing


• Cyber - All areas of internet, such as email & internet chat room misuse, mobile threats by text messaging & calls, misuse of associated technology, i.e. camera & video facilities.


Identifying Bullying


Bullying can be difficult to pick up because it often happens away from others and victims do not tend to tell. However, you can watch for signs that may indicate the presence of bullying. The following lists common bully/victim behaviour.


If a child or protected adult:

• Hesitates to come to training sessions


• Is often the last one picked for a team or group activity for no apparent reason, or gets picked on when the other children think your back is turned.


• Is reluctant to go to certain places or work with a certain individual.


• Has clothing or personal possessions go missing or become damaged.


• Has bruising or some other injury.

• Keeps ‘losing’ their pocket money.

• Is quite nervous, withdraws from everybody else and becomes quiet and shy, especially in the case of those who are normally noisy and loud.

• Becomes suddenly prone to lashing out at people, either physically or verbally when they are usually quiet.


Action to Help the Victim(s) and Prevent Bullying:


• Take all signs of bullying very seriously.


• Encourage all children to speak and share their concerns. Help the victim(s) to speak out and tell the Coach in charge or the Club

Child Protection Co-ordinator (someone in authority).

• Create an open environment.


• Take all allegations seriously and take action to ensure the victim is safe. Speak with the victim and the bully (bullies) separately.


• Reassure the victim(s) that you can be trusted and will help them, although you cannot promise to tell no one else. 


• Keep records of what is said i.e. what happened, by whom and when.


• Report any concerns to Club CPC or SGA Head of Child Protection.


Action taken to deal with the bully:


• Talk with the bully (s), explain the situation and try to get the bully (s) to understand the consequences of their behaviour.


• Seek an apology from the bully to the victim(s).


• Inform the bully's parents/guardians.

• If appropriate, insist on the return of 'borrowed' items and that the bully (s) compensates the victim.


• Impose sanctions as necessary.


• Encourage and support the bully(s) to change behaviour


• Keep a written record of action taken.


Appendix: 2 SG Guidelines on Whistle Blowing


The Protection of children and young people requires everyone to be committed to the highest possible standards of openness, integrity and accountability. SGA supports an environment where people feel free to raise their concerns with the knowledge that all concerns will be taken seriously.

The term ‘whistle blowing’ is often used in such circumstances to describe the raising of a concern about practices, procedures or conduct of an individual. In gymnastics context a whistleblower may be: a Coach, Official, Gymnast, Parent or a Member of the Public.

Concerns should be raised without delay to the CPC, the SGA Head of Child Protection or a trusted adult. The earlier concerns are reported, the easier it will be to take action.


SGA understands that whistleblowers are often very reluctant to report concerns within the club setting. Therefore we recognise that whistleblowers may wish to raise concerns in confidence with SGA. In these circumstances, the identity of the whistleblower will be kept confidential. However, disclosure may become necessary to pursue action against the alleged wrongdoer; in these circumstances, the whistleblower will be consulted in advance wherever possible and practicable.

Scottish Gymnastics will follow up all complaints, concerns or allegations relating to child protection matters including those, which are raised anonymously. In some cases, without an identified complainant, Scottish Gymnastics are unlikely to be able to proceed with disciplinary actions, but in all cases, an initial assessment will be made to consider whether there is sufficient substance in the complaint, the credibility of the referral and the likelihood of identifying others who can confirm the allegations to warrant some initial enquiries or risk assessment.


All concerns raised under this procedure will be treated seriously and depending upon the nature of the matter it may be referred the police. In these circumstances, the whistleblower may be asked to provide a written statement and give evidence to the police and/or at a SGA hearing. SGA will provide support to the whistleblower during this process.


SGA will not tolerate harassment or victimisation and will take action to protect anyone who has raised a concern in good faith. Anyone who is found to have victimised or harassed a whistleblower will face disciplinary action. Anyone who raises concerns known to be untrue may also be subject to disciplinary action.


Appendix 3: SG Procedure for a Missing Child

The following information provides guidance for clubs on how to respond in the event of a missing child or young adult.

In the rare event that a child goes missing from a club, the following actions should be taken. At the point that a child has been identified as missing the club should:

• Ensure that other children in the group are looked after appropriately while a search for the child concerned is conducted.

• Inform the child’s parents if they are present, or nominate an appropriate person to telephone them and advise them of the concern.

• Reassure them that everything is being done to locate the child.


• Organise all available responsible adults by areas to be searched. It is best to take a short time to organise the search properly so that all places are searched fully.


• Search the area in which the child has gone missing including changing rooms, toilets, public and private areas and the club grounds.


• Request all those searching report back to a nominated adult at a specific point.

• Make a note of the circumstances in which the child has gone missing and where he/she was last seen


• Prepare a detailed physical description of the child, including: height, build, hair colour, eye colour and clothing.


• Report the concern to the police if the search is unsuccessful. This must happen no later than 30 minutes after the young person’s disappearance is noted, even if the search is incomplete.

• Follow police guidance if further action is recommended and maintain close contact with the police

• Ensure that you inform all adults involved including the parents, searchers and police if at any stage the child is located


• Incident to be logged and a report sent to SGA Head of Child Protection as soon possible.



Appendix 4: SG Guidelines for Photographs, Publications, Internet & Mobile Technology including. Scottish Gymnastics aim is to create a fun and safe environment for children, young people, protected adults parents/guardians, coaches and officials to enjoy our sport.

We fully expect and encourage action photographs to be taken as these provide fantastic records and memories for families to keep. However, with the increase of gymnastics action photographs appearing in publications and on the internet, we must all take the time to ensure these photographs are suitable for publication. Particular care should be taken to make sure children and protected adults are not portrayed in a demeaning or tasteless manner. The following guidelines should be adhered to:

Internet including Social Media sites:


Publications or information on an Internet site i.e. Facebook or similar, must never include personal information that could identify a child or protected adult e.g. home address, e-mail address or telephone number. Written consent must be obtained from the child young person or protected adult’s parents/guardians before any images are posted.


If the material is changed from the time of consent, the parents/guardians must be informed, and consent provided for the change.

As well as the above guidance, common sense should also be used when deciding which photographs to print:

• Do not use images that appear to focus on the groin area in movements when the legs are in a split position.


• The content of photographs or videos must not depict a child, young person or protected adult in a provocative pose or in a state of

partial undress other than when depicting a sporting activity.


• Where relevant, a tracksuit may be more appropriate attire.


• For photographs or videos of groups or teams of children, young people or protected adults, ensure that only the group or team is referred to, not individual members. Credit for achievements is to be restricted to first name e.g. Tracey was Gymnast of the Year 2002.


• All published events involving children, young people or protected adults must be reviewed to ensure the information will not put them at risk. Any publication of specific meetings or child/protected adult events e.g. team coaching sessions, must not be distributed to any individuals other than to those directly concerned.

• Particular care must be taken when publishing photographs, film or videos of children who are considered particularly vulnerable e.g. the subject of a child protection issue or a custody dispute.


• Care is to be taken when publishing photographs, films or videos of children, young people or protected adults with physical, learning and/or communication or language disabilities, as they could be particularly vulnerable to abuse.

All photographs/videos or other media produced at Scottish Gymnastics (SGA) events or competitions remain the property of the SGA. The SGA acknowledges that media produced at its events by parents, coaches or others involved in supporting SGA events/competitions may be used for personal purposes. Any media produced at an SGA event/competition cannot be distributed for commercial purposes without the express permission of the SGA.

Important Note: Any concerns about publications or Internet information should be reported to the Club CPC or to Scottish Gymnastics Head of Child Protection.

(Referred to as SGC throughout this document)



Policy Objectives

• Stonehaven Gymnastics Club (SGC) subscribes to the principles of equality of opportunity and aims, in line with British Gymnastics (BG) and Scottish Gymnastics (SG), to ensure that anyone participating or wishing to participate in gymnastics or associated activities with the club is able to do so in a discrimination-free environment.

• The Equality Policy is based on the following fundamental principles, set by British Gymnastics, which SGC aims to uphold.

• All persons must respect the rights, dignity and worth of every human being and their right to self-determination.

• All members, volunteers, coaches, applicants and partners in the delivery or participation of the club’s activities are entitled to be treated fairly, regardless of gender, gender reassignment, sexual orientation, age, parental or marital status, disability, religion, colour, race, ethnic or national origins, or socio/economic background.

• Equality must permeate throughout strategic and development plans.

• All participants should be afforded equal opportunity to access services.

• It is everyone’s responsibility to ensure that no form of discrimination is tolerated within the organization and to recognise the same responsibility within both the Scottish and British National Governing Bodies.

• Any individual who feels they have recognised actions in contrary to this policy should raise the concern with The Club’s Welfare Officer and or Executive Committee. In raising a concern, no individual should be treated unfairly as a result.

Purpose of The Policy

• Having been taken, with small amendments, from British Gymnastics, SGC have adopted this policy to ensure that no individual is unlawfully discriminated against or receives less favourable treatment on the grounds of age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation (together these are known as the ‘Protected Characteristics’ under the Equality Act 2010).

• SGC recognises that individuals (and/or certain groups in our society who share one or more Protected Characteristics) may have been denied opportunity to access or participate fully in sport in the past. This Policy has been produced to try to ensure that everyone is treated fairly and avoid practices that could discriminate directly or indirectly towards certain sections of society.

• Equality is about respecting peoples’ individuality. In doing this, SGC recognises that it’s Policy must provide flexibility in order to ensure a service, which is adaptive to individuals’ needs, thus enabling all in society to participate without prejudice or unnecessary barriers.

Responsibilities of Stonehaven Gymnastics Club

• SGC recognizes that the governing bodies strive, through action and policy, to ensure that the sport of gymnastics is free from discrimination, as therefore as a club, endeavours to provide the following standards:

• Provide and implement a policy to protect participants from discrimination.

• Encourage individuals from all communities to become involved in the club and it’s activities.

• Adopt good practice in recruiting, training and supervising volunteers, coaches, club managers and involved individuals.

• Respond to all concerns, and act in an appropriate and timely manner.

Responsibility of the Individual

• Everyone associated with SGC is required to assist in ensuring that the organization meets it’s commitment and avoids unlawful


• Both gymnastics governing bodies recognise that Individuals can be held personally liable as well as, or instead of, the club, for any act of unlawful discrimination. Individuals who commit serious acts of harassment may be guilty of a criminal offence.

• All members will work to promote a culture of acceptance and tolerance, ensuring those involved in the club’s activities have the support and opportunity to be the best person they can.

Legal Requirements

• It is unlawful to discriminate directly or indirectly in recruitment, employment or in the provision of services because of age, disability, sex, gender reassignment, pregnancy, maternity, race (including colour, nationality and ethnic or national origins), sexual orientation, religion or belief, or because someone is married or in a civil partnership.

• SGC recognise the British Gymnastics have noted their legal requirements as follows: British Gymnastics recognises its legal obligations under, and will abide by the requirements of, the Equality Act 2010, and any later amendments to such legislation or subsequent equality related legislation that may be relevant to British Gymnastics.

• The following are recognised as unacceptable: “Discrimination, Harassment, Bullying and Victimisation”

• Direct Discrimination – Treating someone less favourably than another person because of a Protected Characteristics.

• Indirect Discrimination: - an action, rule or policy that applies to everyone but disadvantages someone with a particular Protected Characteristic.

• Associative Discrimination: – direct discrimination against someone because they associate with another person who possesses a particular Protected Characteristic.

• Discrimination by perception: – direct discrimination against someone because others think they possess a particular Protected Characteristic.

• Discrimination arising from disability: – someone is treated unfavourably because of something connected with their disability.

• Bullying: – offensive, intimidating, malicious or insulting behaviour, and /or an abuse or misuse of power that is meant to undermine, humiliate, or injure the person on the receiving end.

• Harassment: - unwanted or offensive conduct directed at oneself or another person.

• Harassment by a third party: – the company is potentially liable for harassment of their staff by people not employed by them.


• Victimisation: - treating a group or individuals in a detrimental way because they have made or intend to make a complaint or provide evidence in support of another complaint.


Monitoring and Evaluation


In line with The British Gymnastics Equality Policy, this document will be regularly monitored, and a full policy review will take place accordingly. The following situations may also evoke a review of the policy


• As a result of any changes in legislation


• As a result of any changes in governance of the sport


• Following a procedural review as a result of a significant case

Produced by SGC - March 2021

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