At Welsh Triathlon Duty of Care is a key priority and something we look to embed in all our practices.
We are proud of the work we are doing to support Duty of Care, and are constantly learning how we can make our sport better in Wales. Throughout the week, we would like to share with you a variety of resources, testimonies, and videos, demonstrating the balance between welfare and success.
What is Duty of Care in Sport?
Duty of Care means that everyone adheres to a standard of reasonable care while performing any acts. You take responsibility for the physical and emotional safety of everyone in your care. Everyone has the right to enjoy sports. So, we should all be able to enjoy sports without having to deal with harm, abuse, or exploitation. When we talk about Duty of Care in Sport, essentially, we mean that safeguarding is a shared responsibility. You should not hesitate to step forward and speak up if you believe something is happening.
The duty occurs in two ways:
- A Legal Duty of Care
- The Legal Duty of Care has a strict definition. An example of this is in Health and Safety procedures. These provide a clear guidance about what reasonable steps should be taken to reduce hazards related to activities, substances, or situations.
- A Moral Duty of Care
- The Moral Duty of Care is more correctly a responsibility for safety and welfare. Members of staff have a responsibility for those children and young people, and other staff, who are under their control.
Who has a Duty of Care in Sport?
Anyone who has an official capacity to organise and manage sport programs and events has a duty to make activities as safe as possible for anyone who participates.
Persons in an official capacity include coaches, referees, coordinators, club administrators, and owners of the sports facility.
Persons who participate include players, spectators, coaches, referees and other officials such as timekeepers and helpers.
Note: The above illustration should not be interpreted as the full list of the persons or legal entities who might owe a Duty of Care to a sport participant.
We use a deliberately broad definition of “Duty of Care”. As well as safeguarding, it considers personal safety, education, equality and diversity, inclusion, and mental welfare. To the support given to participants at the elite level to our volunteers.
How can we implement Duty of Care in Sport?
- Providing and maintaining safe physical environments.
- Encouraging personal safety, health and wellbeing.
- Safeguarding (children and adults)
- Protecting people from:
- Sexual assault
- Providing members with opportunities to raise concerns and offer feedback.
- Protecting ours and others mental health.
- Awareness of where we can get help and support if it is required.
- Making sure our environments are inclusive to everyone.
- Education and training. Ensuring properly accredited and skilled personal.
- Safe recruitment.
Implementing duty of care means we must aim to provide high-quality care to the best of our ability. When acting within a duty of care we provide an environment that is safe, inclusive and encouraging to all participants. 3 simple steps to implement and promote Duty of Care include
- Good practice - Reduce the risk to the participants, this should be embedded in everything.
- Prevention - If something does not feel right speak up.
- Access to advice and support – for extra help or for ideas on where to go or who to speak to for further information.
“The most important element in sport is the people involved, whether they are taking part, volunteering, coaching, or paid employees. The success of the sport, in terms of helping people achieve their potential, making the most of existing talent, and attracting new people to sport relies on putting people – their safety, wellbeing, and welfare – at the centre of what sport does.” Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson, Duty of Care in Sport independent review, April 2017
So, what can you expect to see this week?
Over the course of the next seven days, we are going to highlight the role Duty of Care plays across our sport as well as the work we at Welsh Triathlon are doing to ensure it is embedded in everything we do.
- Safeguarding within Triathlon for both children and adults.
- How our coaches support the Duty of Care within their coaching practices.
- In what way our athletes have benefited from the support they have had from their parents.
- The experiences of our volunteers in a variety of roles.
- As well as a range of external resources that you might find useful
*This article is just for information and is not legal advice. Based on information from the recommendations in the Duty of Care in Sport Review