Notts County Football Club and the League Football Education (LFE) Programme are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expect all accommodation providers to share this commitment. This role involves working with young people and is subject to vetting through the Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) with an Enhanced Criminal Records Checks (CRC). Clearance through The FA CRC system is required. As such, this post is exempt for the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (1974) and the applicant must disclose all previous convictions including spent convictions (subject to the filtering of spent convictions). Two written references will also be required.
The Club has a responsibility to ensure that the apprentices and scholars are placed in a safe and comfortable residence whilst at the club.
Roles and Responsibilities of Accommodation Providers
1. All accommodation providers must agree to an appropriate level of supervision while the apprentice(s) are in residence.
- Apprentices must not be left alone in the property overnight
- Arrangements between the club and the provider should be agreed in respect of apprentice(s) safety when travelling or walking to and from the property late at night.
2. All accommodation providers must agree to undertake an FA Enhanced DBS check and the post will be subject to clearance through this process. Two references must also be provided.
3. All members of the household aged 18 years and older will be required to obtain a DBS check. DBS. After a risk assessment further some members of the household MAY, have to complete the full safeguarding process and other members of the household aged 16 or over MAY have to complete a DBS check
4. The home should provide a good standard of hygiene and cleanliness.
5. The Club and the accommodation providers have a level of responsibility, which goes beyond providing basic or adequate living standards. Apprentices must not be exposed to undesirable / detrimental influences from residents or frequent visitors to the house.
6. Accommodation providers will ensure that the bathroom used by young players has a lockable door and will never enter the room whilst a young player is using it.
7. There must be no access to alcohol and /or adult movies available for apprentices.
Notts County Football Club is committed to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment for all players so that they can participate in football in a relaxed and secure atmosphere.
Bullying or any form of peer on peer abuse is unacceptable and is regarded in football and in Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018 as abuse. If bullying or peer on peer abuse does occur, players or their parents should be able to recognise this and know that incidents will be dealt with promptly and effectively. All incidents will be approached with equal thoroughness and consistency.
Notts County Football Club expects that anyone who knows that bullying or peer on peer abuse is happening should report it to the Designated Safeguarding Officer or other appropriate member of staff, who will then in turn report it to the Designated Safeguarding Officer.
Principles and Objectives regarding Bullying & Peer on Peer Abuse
- Players have a right to play and study at Notts County free from intimidation and fear.
- The needs of the victim are paramount.
- Notts County will not tolerate bullying or abusive behaviour.
- All players will be listened to.
- Reported incidents will be taken seriously and thoroughly investigated
- Sexual violence and sexual harassment is not acceptable and will not be tolerated
- Sexual harassment or violence is not ‘banter’ or ‘a laugh’ or ‘boys being boys’
- All inappropriate sexual behaviour will be challenged including initiation ceremonies, grabbing body parts, inappropriate behaviour in changing rooms
- Sexual harassment/ bullying due to sexuality, real or perceived will not be tolerated
- Every player is responsible for their own behaviour and expected to treat everyone with respect.
- All players, parents/carers, staff and volunteers should have an understanding of what bullying or peer on peer abuse is.
- All players, parents/carers, staff and volunteers should know what Notts County Football Club’s policy is on both issues and follow it when bullying is reported.
- Notts County Football Club takes bullying and abuse very seriously. Players and their parents/carers should be assured that they will be supported when bullying is reported.
3. What is bullying?
- Bullying is the deliberate use of aggression with the intention of hurting, causing embarrassment or pain another person.
- Bullying results in pain and distress to the victim.
- Bullying is unprovoked and repetitive.
- Bullying may be carried out by one person or by a group and gives the bully or bullies a perceived position of power.
Bullying can be any of the following:
Being unfriendly, excluding (emotionally and physically), sending hurtful text messages and tormenting, (e.g. hiding football boots/shin guards, threatening gestures), when ‘banter’ becomes insulting and derogatory.
Includes but is not limited to pushing, kicking, hitting, punching, or any other use of violence.
Includes but is not limited to name-calling, spreading rumours, sarcasm or teasing.
Bullying because of, or focusing on the issue of race.
Includes but is not limited to unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive comments.
Cyberbullying takes place over digital devices like cell phones, computers, and tablets. Cyberbullying can occur through SMS, Text, and apps, or online in social media, forums, or gaming where players can view, participate in, or share content. Cyberbullying includes sending, posting, or sharing negative, harmful, false, or mean content about someone else. It can include sharing personal or private information about someone else causing embarrassment or humiliation.
Bullying because of, or focusing on, the issue of sexuality.
Victims of bullying may be smaller/weaker than their peers, larger than their peers, lacking in confidence, hardworking, or not conform to the group ‘norm’.
Bullies may be bigger/stronger than their victim, confident, less able, enjoy conflict and aggression, also be a victim of bullying, be trying to raise their self-esteem, be seeking attention, or be experiencing problems at home.
Why is it important to respond to bullying?
Bullying hurts and no one deserves to be a victim of bullying. Everybody has the right to be treated with respect. Individuals who are bullying need to learn different ways of behaving. The impact upon a child or young person can be devastating and in some cases, affect all aspects of their life. In extreme circumstances, it can lead to suicide threats or even attempts.
Notts County Football Club has a responsibility to respond promptly and effectively to issues of bullying.
This policy is designed to provide clarity to employees, stakeholders, supporters and everyone connected with Notts County Football Club on the club’s stance to issues of racial harassment and abuse.
It is further designed to promote good relations between persons of different ethnic or national groups and to preserve the good name of the club.
- The club condemns racism in any form, either on or off the pitch. The club aims to create and maintain a working and spectating environment free from racial harassment and abuse. Everyone connected with the club has a responsibility to prevent racial harassment or abuse.
- A racist incident is defined by the club as any incident that is perceived to be racist by the victim, or any other person. Racial harassment is defined by the club to be any verbal, physical, written or visible abuse that is based on a person’s race, ethnic background, colour, nationality, language or cultural background – and is considered to be unwanted, unacceptable and/or offensive to the person. This includes racial chanting, abuse of players and officials, opposing teams and abuse aimed at Notts County Football club players.
- Proven racial harassment or abuse will lead to disciplinary action being taken against employees. Similarly, such behaviour by a spectator will be reported to the police and may result in a life ban from the club. The club will give their full support to the police in any criminal actions.
- All employees have a responsibility to make it clear that such behaviour by anyone connected with the club is unacceptable.
- Line managers are required to investigate and produce a written report of all cases of reported racial harassment. This report must be provided to the Chief Executive/Owner for consideration by the Board of Directors.
- When the club deals with the issue on a formal basis, the employee making the allegations should provide a written statement. The person(s) complained about should be offered the opportunity of providing a verbal or written statement. They should also be advised to seek legal advice at their own expense.
- Depending on the outcome of any disciplinary process, consideration will be given to reporting the matter to the police and The Football Association.
- Supporters will also be informed on a regular basis that racist taunts and abusive or threatening behaviour will not be tolerated by the club and will be encouraged to condemn and report such behaviour.
- Any supporters (home or visiting) behaving in this way will be detained by stewards, passed to the police and may be arrested. Season ticket holders detained for such a reason, face having their season ticket revoked and all spectators detained in this way face a life ban from the stadium.
- The club enjoys a good working relationship with organizations such as Kick it Out and Show Racism the Red Card. We will continue to work in conjunction with them and endorse and demonstrate our commitment to their cause.
Notts County Football Club Academy trips, tours and away games should be planned in consultation with this policy, which should be read alongside the following documents:
- Safeguarding Children Policy
- Safer Recruitment Policy
- Flowchart for reporting abuse
- Codes of Conduct
- Consent forms will be issued to parents for signature, then returned and kept safely in line with data protection legislation
- If the group is aged over 8 years old there will always be 2 adults and a minimum of 1 adult to 16 children (more adults are required when working with younger age groups)
- When taking a male group, there will always be a male member of staff present and with a female group there will always be female staff
- There will always be a qualified first aider and a full and up to date first aid box
- If any of the group have asthma or diabetes, the Academy will ensure that appropriate members of staff are aware of how to deal with any situation
- Notts County Football Club has the following insurance in place ahead of all tours:
- Public and civil liability
- Personal accident
- Breakdown cover (whether it’s a car or mini bus)
- Strict details of where and when to meet, will be established ahead of all trips and tours and for both home and away games
- Anyone transporting children or young people on behalf of the Academy will have a current DBS valid driving licence, MOT and tax when using their own vehicle. They will not transport children without another member of staff being present in the vehicle.
All academy staff – both casual and contracted – will have attended The FA’s Safeguarding Children Workshop and undergone an enhanced DBS check.
When looking at booking overnight accommodation for games, trips and tours, the Academy will risk assess the following:
- What is the locality of the accommodation like?
- Is there secure parking?
- What are the night-time security arrangements?
- What are the reviews of the accommodation on trip advisor etc?
- Can all the players be accommodated on the same floor/area and the same floor/area as staff?
- Can all mini bars be emptied by the accommodation prior to the players arriving?
- Can all TV’s have any adult content disabled prior to the players arriving?
- Does the accommodation have all relevant fire safety, gas and electric certificates in place?
- Are all rooms non-smoking at the accommodation?
- Is there suitable areas for the players to socialise when not playing football that can be supervised easily by staff?
- Can varied dietary needs be met?
- Can valuables be stored safely?
Where possible, a member of Academy staff will visit the accommodation before booking and complete a risk assessment. When this is not possible, efforts will be made to check feedback with another club who have used this accommodation before or check with the local Tourist Information and tournament arranger. This will be documented prior to the tour/tournament being agreed and finalised.
Trip Planning and Organisation
- Every child will have a Safe Away Card
- On trips away, the children may take part in non-football activities, for example, swimming –specific written consent will be sought from parents/carers for each activity for every child – we will use The FA’s Event Specific Consent Form for this
- Adequate insurance will be sought to cover all non-football activities
- A programme will be drawn up, including departure and returning dates and times
- A meeting will be held with parents/carers and players to run through the trip’s programme of events and address any questions or concerns
- Someone from the Academy who is not going away will be identified as a point of contact.
- They will have a list of who is on the trip and their contact details (including the leaders/helpers)
- A designated welfare officer will be identified for the trip, and the Academy will ensure they are suited to this role and make sure everyone in the group is aware of who this person is and what their role is on the trip
- All people travelling will be given information packs, which will include: dates, what travellers are doing, where travellers are going, rules, kit list, pocket money, medical care needs
- If self-catering accommodation is booked, consideration will be given to who is doing the cooking plus any special dietary needs and menus will be agree before travel
Additional Planning – When Going Abroad
- Appropriate insurance cover will be arranged for going abroad and will include medical provision
- It will be established if there is a need for visas
- The need for vaccinations or pre-trip medication will be identified
- Travellers will be asked to bring with them European Health Insurance cards
- Weather reports will be checked in order to take any necessary precautions before travelling e.g. sunscreen etc
- Passports and return tickets will stored in a secure place
- Cultural traditions of the country will be researched and respected. This may have an implication on what clothes staff and players are asked to take
- Consideration will be given to the implications of communication barriers where countries are not English speaking
- Consideration will be given to the use of remote supervision when utilising host families
Additional Health Needs/Disabilities
Notts County Football Club and the Academy are committed to equality and inclusivity across all of its activity’s. We firmly believe football is an inclusive sport and should be open to all.
The following will be considered for young people with additional health needs/disabilities who are part of any of our tips tours and tournaments:
- Is there a requirement for extra helpers?
- Will the helpers need any extra training e.g. asthma medication/diabetes management?
- Accommodation will be suitable and have suitable access for players with a disability
- Dietary needs of children from different ethnic groups will be taken full into account. This includes fasting times linked to religious traditions
- Some activities may not be permitted with a mixed gender within some cultures e.g. not all teenage girls will be allowed to attend mixed swimming sessions.
- Some young people have enuresis (bed-wetting). The club will ensure that the hotel can deal with this discretely if we are informed by the parent/carer, or should the issue arise unexpectedly whilst away.
Prior to Departure
- Before departure, staff will work with players to establish rules for the trip (and what will happen to those who break them)
- Adults will be given a detailed information pack
- Children will be advised not to wear shirts or hats with their names on
- A rooming list will be produced ahead of departure
On Arrival at the Accommodation
- On arrival at the accommodation, a check will be made to ensure that all windows and doors are safe, paying particular attention to rooms at ground floor level.
- Rooms will be checked for any damage and reported immediately to ensure that the Academy is not billed
- All players will be allocated no smoking rooms
- Mini bars in rooms will be stripped of contents
- Parental controls will be placed on TVs in rooms
- Staff will ensure that everyone is aware of fire exits and emergency procedures
- Appropriate storage for money and valuables will be located and agreed. All players valuables and money will be stored and a record made of monies given to each player from the safe as requested
- Staff bedrooms will be spread out, and rooming rearranged if required so there will be at least one adult room on each floor
- A group meeting will be held to review the programme and rules
- Any social areas and access to swimming pools etc with be checked and assessed by staff prior to allowing players to access these areas.
- The Safe Away Cards will be given out to all players
During the Trip
- Daily group meetings and a staff meeting will be held.
- The young people will be asked what they enjoyed and what they would change. This will help with next year’s planning.
The aim of this policy is to ensure that all staff and employees, associates and stakeholders are treated fairly and with respect, and that Notts County Football Club is equally accessible to them all.
2. Policy Statement
Notts County Football Club is responsible for setting standards and values to apply throughout the club at every level.
Notts County Football Club belongs to and should be enjoyed by, anyone who wants to participate in it. Our commitment is to confront and eliminate discrimination whether by reason of gender, sexual orientation, marital status, race, nationality, ethnic origin, colour, religion or belief, ability or disability and to encourage equal opportunities.
This policy is fully supported by the Board of Directors, Technical Board and Senior Management Team who are responsible for the implementation of this policy. The champion for equalities is Board Member and Commercial Director Amanda Fletcher.
Notts County Football Club recognizes its obligation under the Equality Act 2010 and The Codes of Practice published by the Equality and Human Rights Commission and the European Commission for the elimination of discrimination on the grounds of the following protected characteristics:
• Gender reassignment;
• Religion or belief;
• Sexual orientation;
• Marriage and civil partnership;
• Maternity and pregnancy;
Therefore, Notts County Football Club, in all its activities will not discriminate, or in any way treat anyone less favourably on grounds of any of the above.
It means that Notts County Football Club will ensure that it treats people fairly and with respect and that it will provide access and opportunities for all members of the community to take part in, and enjoy, its activities.
Under the Equality Act 2010, individuals are protected from discrimination ‘on grounds of’ the any of the above protected characteristics. This means everyone is protected if they have a characteristic, are assumed to have one or associate with someone who has or is assumed to have one.
Employees and volunteers have a duty to co-operate with Notts County Football Club to make sure this policy is effective and provides equal opportunities to all and prevents discrimination. Notts County Football Club will take action against anyone who acts in a discriminatory way. Serious breaches of this policy may be treated as gross misconduct and dealt with accordingly. Notts County Football Club staff, players and volunteers can be personally liable for acts on unlawful discrimination.
Forms of discrimination and discriminatory behaviour include the following:
Direct discrimination can be described as less favourable treatment on the grounds of one of the protected characteristics.
Indirect discrimination putting rules or arrangements in place that apply to everyone, but that put someone with a protected characteristic at an unfair disadvantage.
Discrimination arising from disability
When a disabled person is treated unfavourably because of something connected with their
disability and this unfavourable treatment cannot be justified, this is unlawful. This type of
discrimination only relates to disability. Disability is defined un this Act as a physical or mental impairment that has a ‘substantial’ and ‘long-term’ negative effect on the ability to complete normal daily activities.
Harassment is unwanted behaviour linked to a protected characteristic that violates someone’s dignity or creates an offensive environment for them. This will also include bullying which is a personal form of harassment involving an abuse of power or influence to persistently criticize, or humiliate an individual. Notts County Football Club has a defined anti- bullying policy in place which will run alongside this policy.
Victimisation is treating someone unfairly because they’ve complained or raised a grievance about discrimination or harassment. Or they have given evidence for someone else case of discrimination This can apply if they are denied a career or training opportunity, refused a reference or providing a negative reference.
Notts County Football Club will recruit staff in a way that allows the best person for the role to be successful, based on experience and qualifications. All recruitment will follow the safer recruitment policy listed on the website.
Notts County Football Club is committed to taking positive action where inequalities exist and to the development of a programme of ongoing training and awareness raising events and activities in order to promote the eradication of discrimination and promote equality in football.
Click here to read Notts County Football Club's gender pay gap report for the 2017-18 season.
Board members and senior managers will be updated and re-trained on equality issues on an annual basis. Staff, players and volunteers will complete EFL and FA training on equality and diversity as required. The whole staff team will be updated on equality and inclusion by the Designated Safeguarding Officer as and when required
6. The FA Charter Standard Club Programme Equality Policy
Notts County Football Club is committed to a policy of equal treatment of all members and requires all members to abide and adhere to these policies and the requirements of the relevant equality legislation.
Notts County Football Club commits itself to the immediate investigation of any claims when brought to its attention, of discrimination on the above grounds and where such is found to be the case, a requirement that the practice stop and sanctions are imposed as appropriate.
Raising a Concern or Making an Allegation
Anyone wishing to raise a concern should do so either verbally or in writing to the Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO) or the Group HR Director. The concern needs to be as specific as possible including any names, dates and locations where possible.
The DSO and Group HR Director can be contacted as follows:
Claire Burrows, Designated Safeguarding Officer
Mobile – 07807 694 561
Beverley Markland, Group HR Director
Direct Line – 07900 740 552
Notts County Football Club has a comprehensive whistleblowing policy in place and this outlines the process that will be followed by the club to resolve concerns and allegations that are not of a safeguarding nature.
The Equality Advisory Support Service (EASS) provides information and advice on discrimination and human rights.
Telephone: 0808 800 0082
Textphone: 0808 800 0084
An easy read version of this policy is available on our website.
Version 5 reviewed: 5th March 2018
Signed off by board: 16th March 2018
1. This is Notts County Football Club's (hereinafter referred to as NCFC) written policy on the recruitment of ex-offenders, which will be made available to all disclosure applicants at the outset of the recruitment process.
2. NCFC is committed to a comprehensive policy of equal opportunities for all in the workplace. We are committed to fair treatment of our staff, potential staff, children or users of our services regardless of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, age, physical/mental disability or offending background. We select candidates for interview based on their skills, qualifications and experience. This policy confirms NCFC's specific commitment to ensuring that ex-offenders are not subjected to discrimination in recruitment and/or employment.
3. To this end, NCFC will provide equal opportunities for ex-offenders, where their conviction has become 'spent' in relation to recruitment, education, training, promotion, transfer and terms and conditions of employment.
4. A disclosure is requested only after consideration has been given to the roles and responsibilities included in the job description and is considered to be proportionate and relevant to the position concerned. For those positions where an enhanced disclosure is required, the recruitment documents used including job specifications, advertisements and recruitment briefs will contain a statement that a disclosure will be requested in the event of the individual being offered the position.
5. The following wording is to be applied where a disclosure is considered to be relevant to the position.
This post requires Enhanced Criminal Records Checks and checks against the Barred Lists and is exempt from Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (1974). Therefore all convictions including spent convictions that have not been subject to filtering by the DBS should be declared.
6. Where a disclosure is to form part of the recruitment process, NCFC encourages all applicants called for interview to provide details of their criminal record, if any, at an early stage in the application process.
7. NCFC requests that this information is sent under separate, confidential cover, to a designated person at the club who will be named in the recruitment process. NCFC recognises the importance of confidentiality and therefore this information will only be seen by those who need to see it as part of the recruitment process.
8. NCFC endorses the use of The FA Criminal Records Checks (FACRC) through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) to ensure appropriate assessment for clearance
for work in football for those working with children, young people or vulnerable groups.
9. The Media Group Criminal Records Body (TMG CRB) and GB Group PLC (GBG) are the umbrella disclosure services which are used by The FA to assess applicants' suitability for positions of trust. This includes those roles which are defined by law as a Regulated Activity, or those roles for which the National Governing Body (NGB), that is The FA, has identified to require Enhanced Disclosures in football. These are defined as unsupervised roles in football which involve teaching, training and instruction or caring for and supervising.
10. NCFC complies with the DBS and The FA Criminal Records Body (FA CRB) Code of Practice and seeks to treat all applicants for positions fairly. NCFC undertakes not to discriminate unfairly against any subject of a disclosure on the basis of a conviction or other information revealed.
11. Under this policy, the first priority of NCFC is to maintain the safety and welfare of children and adults who use the services of NCFC or come into contact with members of NCFC.
12. Under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, many ex-offenders are given certain employments rights if their convictions become 'spent'. An individual who has been convicted of a criminal offence and who is not convicted of a further offence during a specified period (the 'rehabilitation period') becomes a 'rehabilitated person'.
13. The rehabilitation period depends on the sentence and commences from the date of conviction. A conviction resulting in a prison sentence of more than 30 months can never become spent.
14. A rehabilitated person is protected in the following ways:-
a. They do not have to declare their previous conviction(s) for most purposes, such as applying for a job
b. An employer cannot prejudice a person in any way because of a spent conviction
c. Employees are protected against dismissal or exclusion from any office, profession, occupation or employment, on grounds of their spent convicton (with some exception)
15. Exceptions to this rule relate broadly to working with children, the sick, disabled people and the administration of justice. Where an exception applies, if asked, an individual must disclose all convictions including spent ones.
16. NCFC reserves the right to request sight of an employee's DBS certificate on commencement of employment, in order to check for content and thereby make an employment decision on suitability for the role. Additionally, NCFC may request fresh sight of a certificate annually when updating records and at other appropriate times e.g. when undergoing safeguarding audits. At no point will a copy the original certificate, or a copy of the certificate, be retained by NCFC.
17. Unless the nature of the position allows the recruitment officer / disclosure body to ask questions about an applicant's entire criminal record, NCFC will only ask about unspent convictions as defined in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 and as filtered by the Disclosure and Barring Service.
18. Having a criminal record will not necessarily bar you from working with NCFC. This will depend on the nature of the position and the circumstances and background of your offences.
19. Recipients of disclosure information must ensure that disclosure information is not passed to persons not authorized to receive it under Section 124 of the Police Act 1997. Unauthorised disclosure is an offence, so we will ensure that disclosures and the information they contain are available only to those who need to have access in the course of their duties, who, for NCFC, will be the designated Safeguarding Officer. NCFC confirms that it does not hold copies of disclosures including on HR files.
20. An employee who is charged or convicted of a criminal offence will not automatically be dismissed or disciplined for the offence. The details of the offence will be considered and a decision will be made as to whether the employee's conduct merits action because of its employment implications.
21. The following will apply in such situations:-
a. NCFC will investigate the facts of the offence and consider whether the conduct is sufficiently serious to warrant disciplinary action;
b. NCFC will take fair and reasonable action where the conduct requires prompt attention (in such cases, NCFC does not need to await the outcome of prosecution).
22. In some cases the nature of the alleged offence may not justify disciplinary action (eg off duty conduct which has no bearing on employment) but the employee may not be available for work because he or she is in custody or on remand. NCFC retains the right to stop an employee's salary for the period spent in custody. However, each incident will be reviewed on its own merits. Furthermore, in these cases NCFC will decide whether, in the light of the needs of the organisation, if the employee's job can be held open. Where a criminal conviction leads, for example, to the loss of a licence or other EFL or FA compliant documentation so that continued employment in a particular job may be illegal, the organization will consider whether suitable alternative work is available.
23. Where an employee, charged with or convicted of a criminal offence, refuses to co-operate with NCFC's disciplinary investigations and proceedings, this will not deter NCFC from taking action. The employee will be advised in wiring that unless further information is provided, a disciplinary decision will be taken on the basis of the information available and could result in dismissal.
24. More information on the recruitment of offenders through TMG CRB is available at:
25. Reviewed 29/11/2016
The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 imposes a statutory duty on employers to ensure in so far as is reasonable practicable the health and safety of their employees whilst at work. This duty also extends to others who may be affected by that work.
Employees also have a statutory duty to take care of themselves and others who may be affected by their acts or omissions.
To enable these duties to be carried out, it is our intent to ensure that responsibilities for health and safety matters are effectively assigned, accepted, and fulfilled at all levels within our organisational structure.
1. We will, so far as is reasonably practicable, ensure that:
• Adequate resources are provided to ensure that proper provision can be made for health and safety
• Risk assessments are carried out and periodically reviewed
• Systems of work are provided and maintained that are safe and without risks to health
• Arrangements for use, handling, storage and transport of articles and substances for use at work are safe and without risks to health
• All employees are provided with such information, instruction, training and supervision as is necessary to secure their safety and health at work and the safety of others who may be affected by their actions
• Where appropriate, health surveillance will be provided for employees
• The provision and maintenance of all plant, machinery and equipment is safe and without risk to health
• The working environment of all employees is safe and without risks to health and that adequate provision is made with regard to the facilities and arrangements for their welfare at work
• The place of work is safe and that there is safe access to and egress from the work place
• Monitoring activities are undertaken to maintain agreed standards
2. It is the duty of all employees at work:
• To take reasonable care for the health and safety of themselves and of other persons who may be affected by their acts or omissions at work and co-operate with us in fulfilling our statutory duties
• Not to interfere with or misuse anything provided in the interest of health and safety
• This Health and Safety Policy will be reviewed at least annually, amended and updated as and when necessary. Communication of any such changes will be made to all employees
• The club cannot take responsibility for the damage to any personal items caused by flying footballs within the stadium bowl. Supporters are advised to remain for vigilant at all times when players on the pitch.
• There are established and maintained effective procedures for consultation and communication between all levels of management and employees on all matters relating to health, safety and welfare
• Detailed reference information for employees can be found in the Employee Information Manual, which is kept in the Head of Safety and Security's office.
Late collection of children by parents presents Notts County Football Club and its coaches with a potentially difficult situation.
It is important that everyone understands that the Club is committed to the welfare all children and young people who are part of our Academy, but it is not acceptable parents and carers to be late without notifying child’s coach. All parents/carers will be expected to adhere to this policy to help with safeguarding your child
Parents of children starting with the Notts County academy are asked to provide specific information which is kept in our data file in the office including:
- Home address and telephone number of parents/ carers
- Place of work, and telephone number
- Mobile telephone number
- Names and telephone numbers of adults who are authorised by the parents/carers to collect their child from training and games i.e. childminder, relative, neighbour
- Information about any person who has been denied legal access to the child
- Information about who has primary responsibility for the child
If there are any changes to any of the above we ask that a member of club staff (coach, academy administrator, Designated Safeguarding Officer) are notified immediately.
Parents/carers MUST phone their child’s coach as soon as they are aware if there is any likelihood of late collection.
At our training ground all players under 14 years old must be collected directly from the training pitches not the car park. Players will not be allowed to leave the training area until a parent or carer is available.
Guidelines for Coaching Staff:
In the event of a parent/carer failing to collect a child at the agreed session finish time, the coach will wait with the child/young person at the sport facility, with other staff/volunteers or parents present if at all possible.
Coaching staff will keep a record of all calls, times and outcomes and provide these to the Designated Safeguarding Officer the following day.
The coach will then make all the necessary arrangements to attempt contact with the parent/guardian using emergency contact numbers.
Coaches and other Notts County Football staff cannot take a child home on behalf of the parents or transport them to another named adult.
If all attempts fail, the coach will then contact the Club Designated Safeguarding Officer or their line manager for further guidance. Where possible, this will be done in an open environment with another coach in attendance.
If the child has not been collected after an hour we will follow our Safeguarding Procedures and contact the Local Children’s Services or Police. Both authorities will aim to find the parent/carer or relative and if unable to do so, the child will be placed into the care of the Local Authority. If the child must be taken to a police station or children’s services office the coach will either transport the child there with another member of staff or arrange for a taxi to take them both. The cost of this will be charged to the parents/carer.
NB Under no circumstances will staff to go to look for the parent, nor take the child home with them.
A full written report of the incident will be recorded by the relevant member of club staff.
Coaching Staff will:
- Never take the child home or to any other location other than if requested by the appropriate authority. (Police or Children’s Services only)
- Never send the child home with another person without permission from a parent or carer.
- Never ask a child to wait in a vehicle or sport facility with you alone.
- Never spend time alone with children away from others.
- Never transport a child to or from an event or activity.
- Never send a child away from the facility alone.
This policy is written and should be read in conjunction with the Notts County Football Club policy on the Late Collection of Children.
Coaches must be aware, at all times, of the players they have in their care during both training sessions, matches and especially on trips and tours. The coach should ensure the safety of those in their charge by adopting the following procedures: -
For training sessions and home matches:
- Coaches should arrive at least 15 minutes before the time the players have been told to arrive
- If parents arrive early they should not leave the players on their own. Parents must wait until a member of staff and at least one other player arrives before they leave the venue. At the end of the session two members of staff should remain with the players until the parents arrive to collect the players. Under no circumstances must coaches leave a player alone to wait for a parent/ guardian who may be late.
- At each session coaches must take a register of the players who have arrived.
- If parents are going to be late they must inform one of the coaches by mobile phone. Parents should also inform the coach if they are unable to collect their child and are sending someone else to collect the player. Text messages are not acceptable as a means of communication.
- Players should be encouraged to go to the toilet before the training session or match so that they do not have to go during the activity. If a toilet visit is necessary during, players should go as pairs with one member of staff. The member of staff should stay just outside the changing rooms whilst waiting for the player
For away matches:
- Members of staff must report at least 15 minutes before the players
- The member of staff in charge must carry a copy of the list of players travelling and know the total number of players in their charge
- One member of staff from each travelling team must count each member of the team on the coach via a register of names, as opposed to a head count.
- If stopping en route players should be instructed to remain in pairs and at least one member of staff should escort them
- Players should be given clear instructions about the length of the stop and the rules of the break
- If any player is not back on time it must be a member of staff who searches for that player and not another player.
- Before re-starting the journey, each player must be counted back on to the coach and a final register must be taken to ensure that all players are safely on board
- If a player is to travel home with a parent/guardian after the match, that parents must inform the player’s coach so an amendment can be made to the travel list.
- Staff should ensure that players are back on the coach via a register of names, before departure at the end of the game.
- Upon arrival back at the pickup point, at least two members of staff should remain with the players until the parents/guardian collects the
- Staff mobiles should be switched on during each journey
If a player goes missing at any time the following procedures should be followed:
- A member of staff should look for the player
- If the problem is not resolved within 15 minutes, a full-time member of staff should be contacted
- The full-time member of staff should then contact the parent
- If the player is not found after 30 minutes, staff and parents should inform the police
- If a full-time member of staff is not available, the coach who is responsible for the player will inform the parent directly
When a missing child has been located and safely returned to training/the game, the child’s family or the police, the club Designated Safeguarding Officer will conduct an investigation into the circumstances of the child going missing.
This is in order to identify any factors that need to be addressed by the Club or communicated to the parents to prevent a recurrence of the child going missing.
Children Missing from Training/Education
Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018, states that when children and young people go missing from education repeatedly it can be a warning sign of deeper safeguarding issues. Early intervention is therefore necessary to stop these issues becoming even more serious. If a child or young person repeatedly does not attend training without any good reason the welfare officer should be contacted.
Use of images (Still or Moving) - Guidelines
Notts County Football Club takes its guidance on the use of images from guidelines issued by The FA and the National League.
All photographs are taken by club officials, who have been briefed by the Club’s media team responsible for the activity being photographed.
- Before taking photographs of children and young people involved in the academy, parental consent is sought in writing at the start of the season or prior to the event. Parents/carers are responsible for informing the club of any change of circumstances within the season which may affect consent.
- Parents and carers will be informed of how the image will be used. The club will not allow an image to be used for something other than that for which it was initially agreed.
- All children and young people featured in club publications will be appropriately dressed.
- Where possible, the image will focus on the activity taking place and not a specific child/young person.
- Where appropriate, images represent the broad range of youngsters participating safely in football.
- Designated club photographers will be personally responsible for keeping up to date with the latest guidelines on the Use of Images policies from the EFL.
- Club Identification will be worn at all times.
- Children and young people who are under a court order will not have their images published in any club document. It is the responsibility of the parent/carer to inform the club of such circumstances.
- No images of children and young people featured in club publications will be accompanied by personal details such as their school or home address.
- Recordings of children and young people for the purposes of legitimate coaching aids are only filmed by club officials and are stored safely and securely in the academy offices at Meadow Lane Stadium.
- Any instances of inappropriate images in football should be reported to the Designated Safeguarding Officer.
- The Club does not put young player profiles with images and personal information on its website, unless parental/carer AND child/young person consent has been given before the publication has gone ahead.
- Parents are not to take photographs either at training, matches or any other club event unless permission is given.
- If parents see what they deem to be unauthorized photography they should immediately report it to a full-time member of academy staff who in turn are responsible for reporting it to the designated person (DSO) at the club.
- If parents/guardians become aware that these images are being used inappropriately you should inform the club Designated Safeguarding Officer immediately.
- There will be several occasions each season where the club photographer will take official photographs of players. These photographs will be made available for parents and families to purchase.
Notts County Football Club recognises the need to ensure the welfare and safety of all players in football. As part of our commitment to ensure the safety of players we will not permit photographs, video or other images of players to be taken or used without the written consent of the parent/guardian and the player.
Notts County Football Club will take all steps to ensure these images are used solely for the purposes they are intended which is the promotion and celebration of the activities of Notts County Football Club.
There are situations when access to a mobile phone will make a positive contribution to the safety and welfare of children and young people, particularly when an emergency occurs.
However, the use of mobile phones by coaches during training or at competitions, except for the purposes of making or receiving an emergency call is both unsafe and inappropriate conduct.
Children and young people will only ever be contacted in the case of an emergency and when an appropriate adult cannot be contacted. Ideally contact by coaches would be primarily on a face to face basis. Additional communication relating to events, training and other information should be directed to the child or young person's parents or legal guardian.
Notts County Football Club recognises that text messaging is rarely an appropriate response to a child in a crisis situation or at risk of harm. It should only be used as a last resort when other forms of communication are not possible.
No mobile phones – or any other type of filming equipment, are to be used in the toilet areas or changing rooms at any venue.
Videoing as a Coaching Aid
On occasions the club may wish to video a game or training session using Hudl as a legitimate coaching aid. This is part of the coaching programme and parental consent will be obtained at the beginning of the season, the videos from this system can be viewed by coaches and players in that team, they cannot be downloaded externally. More details about Hudl can be found here - https://www.hudl.com/en_gb/about
Update Responsibility: Academy DSO
Revision version: 4
Date for Revision: May 2019
Review details and Who
Development and creation of document
Kate Lovett DSO
Kate Lovett DSO
Updated and filming added
Elaine Bond DSO
Updated with Hudl and reformatted
Elaine Bond DSO
Release of an academy player from registration can be a difficult time. Academy players and parents should remember that involvement in the programme is an achievement in itself. No academy can guarantee that a player will become a professional.
If the Notts County academy does not wish to extend the registration of a scholar, it is expected to provide support by, for example, helping identify opportunities for the player to continue his football career elsewhere.
League Football Education (LFE) also provides careers advice for players released at the end of their scholarships.
Release of Players
All players will be provided with feedback from their coaches and via PMA throughout the season and therefore any decisions should not be a surprise for them or their parents/carers.
a) it is felt that a player is not reaching the standards which the academy demands,
b) a player reaches the age of 18 and is not offered a contract by Notts County Football Club or a place in the Senior Professional Phase team at the end of the season.
- The Academy Manager will consult with the Head of Academy Coaching and agree which players are affected.
- For scholars they will then consult with the Club Technical Board, and the final decision as to whether or not a player is offered a professional contract will rest with the First Team Manager.
- For other academy players the Academy Manager will contact the parents by phone to explain the outcome of their meeting, when and how the player will be released.
- The Academy Manager and the Head of Academy Coaching/Head of Phase Coach will arrange a meeting with the player and their parent(s)/guardian(s) to discuss the player’s exit. Should a parent/guardian be unavailable for the meeting, the club Welfare Officer will be on hand to support the player during the meeting and the entire process.
- At that meeting the player’s assessment sheets and PMA feedback will be reviewed and reasons for the player’s exit be given. At the meeting the player will be made an offer of assistance in finding an alternative football club.
- The Chief Scout will be kept informed about the player’s exit during this process and if it is confirmed that the player is seeking assistance in finding an alternative club, he will use his network of contacts to attempt to identify a suitable club. However, it must be remembered that this is no guarantee at all that a club will be found for the player.
- After the meeting a letter shall be issued to the player recording the decision to release.
- Should the player decide he does not wish to continue a career within football the welfare officer and educational lead will provide resources on educational, training or employment opportunities available at that point.
- After the meeting the Academy Secretary will arrange the player release documentation and ensure that the relevant Associations are informed.
Throughout the process every effort will be made to be sympathetic to the player’s disappointment and support will be in place for them to access at any point.
Under 16 Assessment Trials:
In order to provide an opportunity to obtain a further period of registration at a different club, The Football League stages Under 16 assessment trials, usually during the half term week in February. The assessment trials are attended by scouts from various clubs and education establishments and your performance at these events may provide an opportunity to join a new club or be offered a place at a college or university.
To be eligible to attend the trials you must have been registered at an academy and have been released during the current season. To attend the trials, you are required to be nominated by the releasing club.
After all the trials have taken place, if any interest from the scouts has been registered with the EFL, you will be notified of each clubs’ interest after the final event is held.
LFE Assessment Trials
Run by League Football Education in association with the EFL and The Professional Footballers Association, the assessment trials provide an opportunity for players to be viewed by scouts from professional and non-league clubs. Held on a regional basis across four venues in April and May each year, the trials also attract representatives from European clubs and further and higher education institutions from both the UK and the USA.
To be eligible to attend the trials players should have completed or be about to complete the Apprenticeship in Sporting Excellence (AASE) programme or be coming to the end of a first-year professional contract (i.e. in the Under 19 year).
After the trials have taken place, LFE will notify players if any interest from scouts has been registered in them, usually within two weeks of the final trial date having taken place.
For more information on the Assessment Trials please visit www.lfe.org.uk/progression/trials
What to do if a child, young person or vulnerable adult discloses safeguarding concerns to you in a football setting:
1. Stay calm. Keep tone of voice reassuring and patient.
2. Ensure the child is safe and there is no immediate danger.
3. If the child/young person is present, reassure them they were right to tell and offer reassurance.
4. Listen and reassure that you are taking matters seriously
5. If the child or young person needs immediate medical treatment, telephone for an ambulance, inform doctors/medic of your concerns and ensure that they are aware that this is a child protection issue. Ensure that the child or young person remains supported at all times.
6. Don’t promise to keep confidentiality or promise a possible outcome.
7. Keep questions to a minimum and only use them to clarify what you have been told.
8. In the event of suspicion of sexual abuse, advise the child not to bathe or shower until given permission to do so. Washing can destroy valuable evidence.
9. Staff will be led by the Designated Safeguarding Officer, or the agency managing the allegation as to who should inform parents/carers.
10. Make a full written record of what was said, seen and heard as soon as you can.
11. REMEMBER - you can contact the NSPCC 24 hour Helpline on 0808 800 5000 or Deaf users text phone 0800 056 0566, at any time, for immediate advice and guidance.
Recruiting and selecting the right people is significantly important to the success of Notts County Football Club (The Club). This recruitment policy aims to set out how to ensure, so far as possible, that the best people are recruited, children and adults at risk are safeguarded and that the club’s recruitment process is free from bias and discrimination.
By following this policy, and in addition to fulfilling employment law requirements, the Club will also ensure that it continues to uphold its commitment to equal opportunities, including compliance with the Equality Act 2010 and the Data Protection Act 1998 whilst recognising and fulfilling all UK immigration legislation.
The policy also includes all the relevant FA and EFL guidance is followed to recruit all staff and volunteers who have contact with children and adults at risk. It also no complies with statutory guidance for recruitment in education contained in Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018.
It is the responsibility of each Head of Department to ensure that this policy is carefully followed within their department. All Heads of Departments should make members of their staff aware of the obligation to familiarise themselves with and to follow this policy.
The aim of the recruitment policy is to help deter, reject or identify people who might abuse children and vulnerable adults, or who are otherwise unsuited to working with them, by having appropriate procedures in place for appointing staff.
Staff will not be recruited solely by word of mouth and this process should be followed at all times. Additionally, all roles will be advertised internally as well as externally, although the process itself remains the same with the exception of documentation validation which will previously have taken place.
The policy objectives are to operate this procedure consistently and thoroughly while obtaining, collating, analysing and evaluating information from and about applicants applying for job vacancies at Notts County Football Club.
Roles and Responsibilities
It is the responsibility of The Club to:
- Ensure the club has effective policies and procedures in place for recruitment of all staff and volunteers in accordance with EFL guidance and statutory requirements.
- Monitor the club’s compliance with them.
It is the responsibility of the Designated Safeguarding Officer and other Managers involved in recruitment to:
- Ensure that the club operates safe recruitment procedures and makes sure all appropriate checks are carried out on all staff and volunteers who work at the club.
- To monitor contractors’ and agencies’ compliance with this document.
- Promote the safe welfare of children and young people at every stage of the procedure.
In accordance with the EFL regulations, the club has delegated responsibility to the Group HR Director to lead in all appointments. Other Heads of Department may be involved in staff appointments but the final decision will rest with the Chief Executive.
Pre-Employment and Recruitment Process:
A job description is a key document in the recruitment process, and must be finalised prior to taking any other steps in the process. It should clearly and accurately set out the duties and responsibilities of the job and must include:
- Job title
- Location of the post
- Grade of the post
- The post to whom the post holder is responsible
- Main purpose of the job
- Main duties and responsibilities
- The level of DBS/CRC check required for the role
- Salary and package
Details for Applicants
The details for the applications must include the job description and person specification together with any other important information that a potential applicant needs to decide whether to apply:
• Main terms and conditions of employment: package, holiday, working hours, etc.
• Standard information about The Club.
• Equality statement.
All staff should be aware that when dealing with enquiries about vacancies it is unlawful to state or imply that applications from one sex or from a racial or ethnic group would be preferred. These may lead to a complaint of discrimination. In addition, staff should be mindful of age and disability discrimination.
The confidentiality of applications must be respected by all of those involved in the selection process.
Selecting the Interview Panel
All interviews regardless of the nature of the role must be conducted by either an experienced interviewer(s) or a panel. The Heads of Departments / Line Manager should select interview panel members prior to the closing date. This allows panel members to assist in the shortlist process.
An interview panel should assess all applications to determine which applicants are to be called for interview. Shortlist decisions should be based on evidence that the applicant has met the requirements of the person specification. This process will be completed by the Group HR Director and a member of the departmental management team.
The original applications for all applicants, together with a written note of reasons for shortlist or rejecting applicants must be retained for a minimum of 12 months from the date that an appointment decision is notified, in case of complaint to an Employment Tribunal and to satisfy UK Border Agency requirements to keep records for 12 months where a certificate of sponsorship is required.
To assist with this all CVs, correspondence and criteria information should be forwarded to and retained by HR throughout and by the end of any interview process.
Arrangements for Interviews
Letters or emails inviting candidates for interviews should include:
- Date, time and place of their interview
- Instructions on how to find their way to the interview venue
- If appropriate, details of any test or presentation
- Qualification certificates that are essential to the post
- Any special arrangements required by the applicant to be able to attend or complete the interview
It is advisable that The Group HR Director joins the interview panel, and should be advised of this in advance.
The structure of interviews should be decided in advance by determining who will chair the panel and what areas of questioning are required to be covered.
The same areas of questioning should be covered with all candidates and assumptions should not be made regarding the expertise or abilities of candidates because of their employment history. Interview questions should be phrased so that they do not favour any one candidate or group of candidates. Supplementary questions should be used to probe for further information or clarification where answers are incomplete or ambiguous.
Care must be taken to avoid questions that could be construed as discriminatory (e.g. questions about personal circumstances that are unrelated to the job).
ALL interviews for All Staff and those who will work with children and adults at risk MUST include a generic safeguarding question and failure to answer this sufficiently will seriously make the panel question their suitability for any role.
Interview notes must be taken by each panellist to help the panel to make a decision based on the content of the interviews. Such notes must relate to how candidates demonstrate their knowledge, skills, experience and abilities in relation to the person specification. The General Data Protection Regulations allows applicants to request disclosure of such notes in the event of a complaint.
Making a Decision after Interview
The information obtained in the CV, the interview, and in references will allow candidates to be assessed against the person specification and a selection decision to be made.
Interview proceedings are confidential and interviewers are free to divulge to others the decision reached only once the appointee has accepted the post.
Pre- employment checks including academic qualifications, professional registration, the right to work and any other specifics considered essential for the post must be verified by the Club before any formal employment offer or before actual date of employment.
All employees, casual employees or volunteers who will be taking part in a regulatory activity as defined by Schedule 4 of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 will have to complete an Enhanced DBS check unless they have a current one completed by the FA.
Regulated activities include
- Teaching, instructing, caring for or supervising children if the person is unsupervised or providing guidance on physical emotional or educational well-being, or driving vehicle only for children;
- Work for a limited range of establishments (known as ‘specified places’, which include schools and colleges), with the opportunity for contact with children, but not including work with supervised volunteers
New employees must declare any convictions, cautions or reprimands, warnings or order that may have been incurred. The Club reserves the right to carry out risk assessments where content has been disclosed on a DBS disclosure if it feels that it is relevant to the job requirements. Failure to satisfy the Club and the EFL’s safeguarding requirements WILL lead to the job offer being withdrawn or dismissal.
Academy workers will not be able to start a new role until all ID, certification, DBS and YD2 compliance is verified and two satisfactory references have been sent for. At this point they will be appropriately supervised and unable to be with players on a one to one basis until a DBS is physically reviewed and two satisfactory references received by the Designated Safeguarding Officer.
For other employees with close contact to children and vulnerable adults and enhanced DBS check must be reviewed, until then they will be appropriately supervised and unable to be with players/ children/ adults at risk on a one to one basis until all checks have been cleared.
It is an offence to employ anyone who does not have permission to be in, or work in, the UK. To avoid making assumptions about such permission, all new joiners will be required to provide evidence of eligibility to work in the UK before undertaking any works with the Club. Failure to provide appropriate right to work documents will prevent the new joiner from commencing employment until they are produced to HR. Certified photocopies of these documents should be kept in employee individual profiles by HR.
Provisional offers may be made, subject to provision of a certificate of sponsorship being issued and entry clearance or status extended being obtained. Failure to provide the appropriate paperwork will result in the job offer being withdrawn.
Where the successful candidate is disabled, reasonable adjustments may need to be considered depending on their disability in consultation with them. The Club has a duty to consider what reasonable adjustments can be made to working practices, or premises, or to enable access to goods, facilities and services by disabled people. Individuals who have a disability and who require support should notify HR in the first instance.
Employing overseas footballers
If an offer of employment were made by the club to non-EU nationals, the club will follow the guidance issued by The Football Association at that given point in time.
Before applying for a certificate of sponsorship, the club shall ensure that the player’s birth country will be listed on FIFA ranking list, taken at the date on which the club applies for the certificate of sponsorship, and that he has played the requisite number of international games as stated in The FA’s guidance.
Recruitment and Vetting Checks:
Two professional/character references must be provided. These will always be sought and obtained directly from the referee and their purpose is to provide objective and factual information to support appointment decisions. Any discrepancies or anomalies will be followed up. Direct contact, either by telephone, face-to-face, or by email will be made with each referee to verify the reference.
References from relatives or friends will not be accepted. Appropriate referees are those who have direct experience of a candidate’s work, education or training: preferably in a supervisory capacity and a reference must be obtained from the current or previous employer.
A reference form is available to be used for telephone or email request and should be chased until a reference is received. In cases where references have not been received the employee will be asked to provide another suitable referee.
References for All Staff will be requested by the Designated Safeguarding Officer and those for other staff will be completed by the Group HR director.
On receipt, references should be checked to ensure that all specific questions have been answered satisfactorily. The referee should be contacted to provide further clarification as appropriate, for example if the answers are vague. They should also be compared for consistency with the information provided by the candidate on their application form.
Telephone references are acceptable, where time pressures or the location of referees dictate that this may be appropriate.
References are confidential. References should only be used for the purpose for which they were intended and their confidentiality must be maintained.
Failure to provide or receive references within the first four weeks of employment, whether permanent, part time, fixed term or casual may result in the offer of employment being withdrawn. In cases of All Staff all work will cease until this is completed.
Previous Employment History
Complete information about previous employment must be provided along with satisfactory explanations for any gaps in employment.
Proof of identity / Eligibility to work
These checks will be carried out on all appointments to the Club's workforce before an appointment is made.
Acceptable proof of identity / eligibility may include (detailed list below in attachment 1):
A.) Proof of address in the form of a utility bill or bank statement and passport
B.) Proof of address as above and Birth certificate combined with either P60 or P45 from a previous employer and NI Card.
Single Central Record
All Football clubs have to maintain a single central record that records all pre-employment checks listed above for all staff with contact with children and adults at risk. This includes personal details, DBS data, ID checks and reference outcomes. It is submitted to the EFL every year and failure to remain up to date with certification or DBS will result in suspension.
The Club reserves the right to carry out independent medical assessments for roles that require a specific level of fitness associated with the role the individual is required to carry out. Health declarations should be completed on request.
Candidates must be able to prove they have actually obtained any academic or vocational qualifications legally required for the post and claimed in their application.
Notts County Football Club will therefore consider ex-offenders for employment on their individual merits. The organisation's approach towards employing ex-offenders differs, however, depending on whether the job is or is not exempt from the provisions of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.
All staff employed who work in regulated activities with children and adults at risk are exempt from the provisions of the Rehabilitations of Offenders Act 1974. The Club will require these applicants to disclose all convictions, whether spent or unspent. Even in these circumstances, however, the Club will not refuse to employ a particular individual unless the nature of the conviction has some relevance to the job for which the individual has applied. For these roles a risk assessment will be completed by the designated safeguarding officer and the Group HR director prior to allowing the staff member to work alone with vulnerable groups.
The Club processes information about an individual's criminal convictions in accordance with our data protection policy. In particular, data collected during recruitment is held securely and accessed by, and disclosed to, individuals only for the purposes of completing the recruitment process and safeguarding. Inappropriate access or disclosure of employee data constitutes a data breach and should be reported in accordance with the organisation's data protection policy immediately.
Once an individual is recruited, information about his/her criminal record gathered in the course of the vetting process will not be transferred to his/her personnel file.
For those who are employed by the Club working with children and adults at risk, a risk assessment will take place, the details of which will be stored securely. The fact there is a conviction and a risk assessment took place will be stored and submitted on the single central record but not the details of either.
The following procedures for applying to attend academy fixtures at Notts County Football Club this season.
Any club or intermediary wishing to send a representative to Notts County academy U8 to U18 fixtures must request permission by email at least 48 hours prior to any fixtures. Requests made after this point will unfortunately be declined.
The application should be sent to email@example.com. Applications will be acknowledged with details by return email. Please note that the Club will not accept applications by fax/telephone call/text message.
- Upon arrival at the venue, all representatives must report to a member of the coaching staff.
- Official scout/intermediary photo ID for the 2021-22 season must be shown to gain entry.
- Representatives will be required to sign an attendance book.
- Representatives are strictly forbidden from making approaches or communication of any form with players and/or parents.
- Any attempt to photograph or film at the game/training venue is strictly prohibited (including camera phones). Any breach will result in the representative being asked to leave the venue with refusal to attend future fixtures, and the individual will be reported to the regulating body and banned from club premises.
- Any representatives arriving unannounced, without prior permission and/or appropriate photo ID will be asked to leave the venue immediately and the individual will be reported to the FA and EFL and banned from club premises.
- Any intermediary submitting a request to attend an academy fixture will be checked against The FA’s Registered Intermediaries list to ensure that they are authorised to represent minors. Any individual not authorised will have his/her request declined.
- If there are any suspicions about anyone claiming to be a scout or intermediary the club in question will be called for verification. If this is not satisfactory the police will be called if players are felt to be at risk.
Under the terms of this policy, NCFC employees or casual workers will not divulge or permit to be divulged the personal data or information, including telephone numbers, of parents and players without the written approval of the Academy Manager.
The Academy Manager is responsible for ensuring the Academy’s awareness of this policy and in sharing the policy with the recruitment and administration departments, as well as coaches, accordingly.
Notts County FC Academy Scouting staff
Notts County will recruit scouts whether employed or volunteers following the recruitment policy and all our scouts will be registered with the EFL. They will all carry club id badges with their name and photograph on it.
There is a club scouting code of conduct which all scouts adhere to, this is available on request. The key areas are that Academy scouts will be fully aware of the safeguarding policy and received sufficient training in this area to be to report issues. They will be aware of the club’s talent requirements, promote a positive image and be fully aware of the process to approach managers of other clubs. All observations and approaches will be documented
Scouts will not:
- Abuse their position
- Make unrealistic promises to children, parents, or club managers.
- Observe games without introducing themselves to the officials at the match.
- Promise trials at clubs without the permission / agreement of the club.
Players are entitled to use an intermediary from the 1st January of their 16th year. The academy manager will treat any request from an intermediary for an under 18 player on a case by case basis and reserves the right to not engage in this process.
Anyone posing as a Notts County FC Academy scout will be automatically reported to the FA and to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO)/police if this is appropriate.
Notts County Football Club is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people.
This policy ensures that every consideration is paid to the welfare of all young players who are under the age of 18 whilst they are using (1) Club transport, (2) whilst being transported by a Club member of staff, or (3) whilst travelling to or from Club activities.
This is particularly relevant to Scholars due to the full-time nature of their involvement with the Club however this policy is also applicable to all Academy players when necessary.
As the stadium and the training ground are sited at different venues, arrangements have to be made for players to travel independently or to travel on club transport. Wherever possible and practicable it is advisable that apprentices and all players aged 18 and below travel in club vehicles with at least one adult (in addition to the driver) acting as an escort.
When transporting young players on tours and tournaments, Notts County Football Club adheres to the guidance provided by the FA (Travel, Trips and Tournaments), the EFL (Youth Tours and Tournaments), and the Department of Education (Health and Safety for Pupils on
If at any time staff need further guidance on any of the above then they should contact the club Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO) to be clear of the Academy’s transport policy. If for any reason you are in a position that you cannot follow protocol then you must phone the DSO first to assist and provide further advice.
If any player/parent has a complaint about how the transport policy operates then please contact the club DSO, Welfare Officer or Academy Manager.
Current Travel Arrangements
Club and public transport is used across the Academy during the working day to transport players between the stadium, the training ground and other training or education venues.
The scholars use public transport and their own cars for their journeys to and from the club / training ground on a daily basis.
Club transport is used to transport them to other training venues, and to away match venues.
On occasions, U15 and U16 players are asked to attend training at the stadium in school holidays.
On these occasions, players are asked to make their own way to the ground either by public transport or with a parent/guardian and be collected at the end of their session. Where possible, at least two members of staff will remain with these players until they have all been collected or made their way to their transport.
For academy tours and tournaments and away games farther afield, there can be a combination of club transport and transport from an external provider.
On a standard working day (without youth or first team fixtures), scholars and players aged 18 and below will be transported from home to Meadow Lane either with their parents, by public transport or in their own private vehicles. All scholars using buses and trams are given public transport passes, paid for by the club. On Wednesday’s scholars will make their own way to Nottingham College by their normal means of transport, on Thursday’s they will be transported to and from Meadow Lane on the club mini bus.
Home Match Days (Youth Team)
On home youth games, players will travel from home to Meadow Lane as above. Players will then be transported to the game on the club owned minibus. Following the game, they will be returned to Meadow Lane and will make their way home either by bus, with parents or in their own private vehicle.
Away Match Days (Youth Team)
Home Match Days (First Team)
On first team home games, players will travel to and from Meadow Lane with parents, by bus or in their own vehicles, as above. On an evening fixture, players will leave the ground as soon as practicable following the final whistle to ensure they are not using public transport too late into the evening.
On evening fixtures, players are not expected to remain at the ground to clean the dressing room and tunnel areas but cannot leave the ground until permission is given by a senior member of academy coaching staff.
The club uses a minibus when transporting young players. This vehicle is mainly used for transporting players to matches, training, college, and on tours and tournaments. The minibus is owned by Notts County Football Club.
The vehicles are maintained by qualified mechanics under the instruction of the Operations Manager at Notts County FC. The Operations Manager ensures that the vehicles are regularly serviced and receive MOTs.
The driver of the minibus will carry out the following checks before leaving
- Tyre wear
- Screen Wash
- Any other damage inside and outside
The vehicles are insured for all intended use which includes the transportation of young and professional players.
All staff aged 25 and over, and who are in full-time employment with the club and who have a minimum of two year’s driving experience on a full license are permitted to drive company vehicles providing that the club gives them permission to do so, and that they provide a copy of their driving license. The records of this information are monitored by the Group HR Director at Notts County Football Club.
All drivers know the maximum capacity for the vehicle they are using and know that this must not be exceeded. For driving mini buses, staff must be in possession of a license issued prior to 1997 or a separate mini bus license. In the event that training is needed for a member of staff to be able to drive a mini bus, the Group HR Director will arrange the necessary training and assessments and keep a record of this on file.
When staff use club vehicles for the main purpose of transporting young players, there are the following additional requirements;
- Members of staff must have an enhanced DBS disclosure through the FA’s registered body;
Staff are required to notify the Academy Director and HR Manager of existing or impending disqualifications or convictions;
- Staff are required to submit their license for regular checks as requested by the club;
- Staff must report to the club details of any medical conditions which may affect their driving;
- The club must issue consent forms to the parents/carers of players to obtain their permission for players to be transported in club vehicles or vehicles belonging to an external transport provider as necessary, for the duration of their registration at the club. Parents and carers can withdraw this consent at a later date if they wish and their child will no longer be able to access any club transport and transport provided by an external company. In the event that a player is touring with the club, an additional consent form is requested for the tour (EFL Form T5 from the Tours and Tournaments document).
Members of staff may on occasion be asked to transport children in their private vehicles as part of their duties, in particular when circumstances arise where the risk of not transporting a young person is greater than doing so, for example after a late football fixture and the distance to home is too far or too dangerous to walk, or in an emergency situation.
If a member of staff must transport a young player in their private vehicle because it is the safest or only option, they must as far as possible adhere to the following and ensure a record of emergency journeys is sent to the DSO as an exceptional circumstance .
The DSO will need the following information,
- the reasons for the journey,
- any incidents that arise during the journey
The driver must have the following
An enhanced DBS disclosure through the club and The FA;
- A roadworthy and appropriately insured vehicle that meets all the legal requirements for use of the road;
- Permission from the young player’s parents/carers;
- (Wherever possible) Have another member of staff accompanying them;
- Player(s) to be seated in the back wearing a seatbelt.
The club cannot take any responsibility for players being transported in privately owned vehicles and therefore, require staff to have business insurance for their vehicle, to declare to their insurers that they work within the academy of a professional sports club, and to make their insurer aware that this may involve the occasional transportation of young players. Staff are advised to ensure that their insurance cover would be adequate to transport young players.
Wherever possible and practicable the club will ensure that all players aged 18 or below, during the working day or any official duty, are undertaken other than in staff private vehicles, with at least one adult (in addition to the driver) acting as an escort.
Clubs will ensure that staff, volunteers and academy players who drive during their working day are informed that they should discuss their insurance needs with their own insurance company, identify their occupation and if they use their cars for any business-related activity (including giving lifts to fellow players) ensure they have appropriate insurance cover for any work-related journeys.
Minibus and coach hire
There are occasions when the club will use a coach company, for example, for a tour. The club has good relationships with local transport providers who understand the club’s commitment to safeguarding, and who are used on the occasions when a coach is required.
These companies have adequate public liability insurance, a copy of which is obtained prior to hire. The drivers are qualified and experienced with the correct driving license for the vehicle being driven.
The vehicles that are used are appropriately insured, roadworthy and regularly maintained.
They are fitted with seat belts appropriate to the size and type of vehicle and passengers to be carried.
Players are always accompanied by staff members when being transported by external transport providers. Staff numbers will provide the appropriate supervision ratios for the age range of the group.
The club will ensure that appropriate legal advice and all reasonable care is taken when entering into contracts with individual transport providers.
The club owns a 16-seat minibus. We strongly recommend that all scholars use the mini-bus but for those with access to a car the section on private vehicles applies to them as well.
All club vehicles undergo annual servicing and MOT testing and are kept up to date on road tax.
Staff members must be fit to drive and free from any drugs, alcohol or medicine which may impair their judgment and the ability to drive.
Their behaviour must be appropriate at all times. Any incidents that occur on the journey must be reported to the DSO and Academy Manager straight away or as soon as it is safe to do so.
When transporting young players, staff must adhere to all legal requirements such as not using mobile phones. They must also consider recommendations such as taking regular breaks whilst driving and being aware of the dangers associated with tiredness when driving.
Where possible, drivers should be accompanied by another member of staff when transporting young people as this may significantly reduce the risk of distraction, accident, injury or allegation of misconduct or abuse.
The decision of whether it is safe to transport young players in bad weather conditions (snow and ice) is down to the discretion of the staff member. Staff should not transport young players if they do not feel it is safe to do so in the road or weather conditions. If a decision is made not to transport players to their destination, the Academy Manager and DSO should be informed as soon as it is safe to do so.
Staff must be aware of the club regulations detailed in this policy concerning the use of privately owned vehicles to transport players.
Players should take responsibility for confirming travel arrangements and ensuring that they are on time and prepared for travel.
Players should understand their personal responsibilities such as wearing seatbelts and not participating in high risk behaviour, for example, distracting the driver or disturbing their concentration.
Players should not ask for or accept lifts from staff members in private vehicles.
Parents/carers should never ask staff members to provide transport for their child in a personal vehicle.
Scholars in their own vehicles
Many young players whilst on the scholarship programme pass their driving test and get their first car.
When a scholar passes their driving test, the academy management team will offer certain advice to the apprentice. For example, they (academy management team) will recommend that the player informs their insurer of their profession as a footballer.
Whilst scholars may make private arrangements for carrying passengers (who may be other scholars or professional footballers) in the course of normal leisure activities, they should, with the help of their parents or carers, ensure they have appropriate insurance cover should they chose to provide lifts in work time to other scholars.
Scholars will not generally be asked to provide transport for other peers or staff during their working hours.
With regards to independent travel such as walking or using public transport, scholars are advised to plan their route, stick to busy or well-lit streets, and to stay alert, keeping their mind on their surroundings.
For players aged 16 or below who are travelling on their own as part of day release or during the holiday period, parents will be informed of all details with regards to the day release programme.
- Driver registration form
- Check list – monitoring driver information
- Transport consent form
- Transport Risk Assessment
- Safety Code for New Drivers
Approximately 1 in 4 people in the UK will experience a mental health problem each year.
EFL guides have been designed to offer support and advice to people in need of support. Working with the NHS, these self help guides provide information on types of Mental Health conditions and where to go for support.
You can access the guides HERE.
Notts County Football Club (hereinafter referred to as NCFC) is committed to the highest possible standards of:-
- Openness and inclusiveness
- Integrity in line with those commitments
The aims of this procedure are to:
- Encourage those working at or associated with NCFC to report suspected wrongdoing, including acts that could be considered to be treated as offences in line with the Sexual Offences Act 2003 or acts of fraud, criminal activity or misconduct as soon as possible, in the knowledge that their concerns will be taken seriously and investigated as appropriate, and that their confidentiality will be respected.
- Provide guidance on how to raise concerns.
- Reassure those raising concerns that they are able to raise genuine concerns ‘made in the public interest’ without fear of reprisals, even if they turn out to be mistaken.
NCFC will provide all reasonable protection for those who raise concerns ‘made in NCFC’s interest’. NCFC will be responsible for ensuring that appropriate personal support is offered both to the individual raising a concern and to the person against whom allegations have been made under this procedure.
This policy sets out how individuals can raise concerns about the safety and welfare of all employees and casual workers but more particularly children, young people and vulnerable adults involved in NCFC. It will also provide guidance on how they can receive feedback on any action taken. NCFC will ensure individuals will:
- receive a response to their concerns in line with the Club’s complaints procedure.
- be made aware of how to pursue the concern further if they are not satisfied with the response.
- be re-assured that individuals reporting any concerns will be protected from reprisals or victimisation for whistleblowing in good faith.
What is ‘Whistleblowing’?
‘Whistleblowing’s is defined as ‘raising concerns about misconduct within an organisation or within an independent structure associated with it’ (Nolan Committee on Standards in Public Life). In the legislation it is called a protected disclosure.
The Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998 protects employees who ‘blow the whistle’ from suffering a detriment in their employment or being dismissed by their employer if they make disclosures in accordance with the legislation.
An employee has certain common law confidentiality obligations to their employer. However, in a limited set of circumstances whistleblowing may override these obligations if an employee reveals information about their employment or the work of NCFC.
This guidance sets out the circumstances under which these disclosures may lawfully be made.
A concern must relate to something which:-
- Is a breach of NCFC’s policies and procedures including HR and safeguarding policies and procedures; or
- Falls below established NCFC or EFL standards or practices; or
- Amounts to improper conduct, including something that may be
a. A breach of the law
b. A failure to comply with a legal obligation
c. A possible miscarriage of justice
d. A Health & Safety risk
e.An act that could be considered to damage the environment
f. Misuse of NCFC or public money
g. Corruption or unethical conduct
h. Abuse of children, employees, casual workers or other users including abuse linked to a position of trust issue
i. Deliberate concealment of any of these matters
j. Any other substantial and relevant concern
Everyone involved in activity carried out under the jurisdiction of NCFC has a duty to understand and comply with the nature and scope of this policy.
Players, coaches, officials, parents or team followers are often the first to realise that an individual and, more specifically within NCFC, a child’s safety and welfare is under threat. However, they may not express their concerns because they feel that speaking up would be too difficult to handle. It may also be that they fear harassment or victimisation.
The Club will investigate all matters raised in line with its Whistleblowing Policy and will carry out a fair and transparent investigation and will take steps to support and protect anybody who blows the whistle.
However, individuals, and in particular employees, should be aware that those considered to have blown the whistle will be protected from any acts of bullying and victimisation and other acts intended to cause or distress to such individuals.
Additionally, the Club will also take steps, in line with its disciplinary policies and procedures, against any individual who blows the whistle knowing that the matter(s) raised are not true and accurate. If this does occur, any perpetrators will be dealt with under NCFC’s disciplinary policy/procedure resulting in the possible termination of an individual’s employment with the Club.
Principles of the policy
Notts County Football Club defines all roles within the academy and coaching staff that come into contact with children and young people as positions of trust and therefore ban any sexual relationships/activity between adults in those roles and 16 - 17-year olds for whom they are in a position of authority. Coaches and others in positions of authority and trust in relation to players aged 16 and 17 years must not engage in sexual relationships with them while that unequal power relationship exists. These issues are dealt with by this policy and the Allegations Policy available on the Club website, as well as following guidance from the SOA 2003.
In these circumstances, it may be easier for them to ignore the concern rather than report what may just be a suspicion of poor practice. NCFC would urge anyone to come forward and voice those concerns.
This policy details how individuals can raise a matter of concern without fear of victimisation, subsequent discrimination or disadvantage. The policy is intended to encourage and enable individuals to raise serious concerns within NCFC rather than overlooking a problem or blowing the whistle outside.
It is in the interest of all concerned that disclosures of potential abuse or irregularities are dealt with properly, quickly and discreetly.
How to raise a concern
All concerns will be treated sensitively and with due regard to confidentiality and where possible every effort will be made to protect your identity if you so wish. Nevertheless, this information will need to be passed onto those with a legitimate need to have this information and it may be necessary for you to provide a written statement or act as a witness in any subsequent disciplinary proceedings or enquiry. This will always be discussed with you first.
If you wish to raise a concern you should normally raise it with your line manager, or with the Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO) if you are not an employee of NCFC. This can be done in person or in writing.
NCFC recognises that sometimes it may be inappropriate for you to approach your line manager or the DSO with your concern. In these circumstances, a number of alternatives are available depending on the nature of your concern. You can contact any of the following: -
- The NCFC Group HR Director
- The FA
- The EFL
Although you are not expected to prove beyond doubt the truth of your concerns, you will need to demonstrate that you have sufficient evidence or other reasonable ground to raise them.
The person with whom you have raised your concern will acknowledge its receipt as soon as possible and will write to you within 28 days to let you know how your concern will be dealt with. The information you can then expect to receive is:
- An indication of how the concern will be dealt with
- An estimate of how long it will take to provide a final response
- Whether any initial enquiries have been made
- Whether further investigation will take place, and if not why not
- Information about support available for you
The person with whom you have raised your concern will at the same time notify the Group HR Director that a whistleblowing allegation has been made.
Initial enquiries will be made to decide whether an investigation is appropriate. Where an investigation is necessary, it may take the form of one or more of the following: -
- An internal investigation by the DSO/Group HR Director, which may, for example, take the form of a disciplinary investigation
- A referral to the EFL
You will be informed of the outcome of any investigation, in writing, and/or of any action taken, subject to the constraints of confidentiality and the law. If you do not feel your concern has been addressed adequately you may raise it with an independent body such as one of the following as appropriate: -
- The EFL
- The FA (0800 169 1863 and asking for The FA's safeguarding team, or via email on safeguarding@TheFA.com.)
- Child Protection in Sport Unit via firstname.lastname@example.org
- NSPCC Helpline via 0808 800 5000 or by emailing email@example.com
- Your trade union
- The Citizen’s Advice Bureau
- A relevant voluntary organisation
- The police
- Local Authority Designated Officer
You must make a disclosure ‘in NCFC’s interest’ and in the circumstances it must be reasonable for you to make the disclosure. If there is an issue of an exceptionally serious nature which you believe to be substantially true, then you may disclose the issue to someone other than those listed above. In determining whether it is reasonable for you to have made a disclosure the identity of the person to whom the disclosure is made will be taken into account. Disclosures to anyone outside of the recognised bodies specified may not be protected disclosures under the Act.
NCFC encourages you to put your name to an allegation whenever possible. Concerns expressed anonymously are much less powerful but will be considered at the discretion of the Club. In exercising this discretion, the factors to be taken into account would include:
- the seriousness of the issues raised
- the credibility of the concern
- the likelihood of confirming the allegation from attributable sources.
Notts County will do its utmost to keep confidential the identity of a whistleblower. Should any allegations be made through whistleblowing it should be noted that a statement may be needed to form part of the evidence.
Should the whistleblower need to be identified or it becomes apparent that the whistleblower will be identified because of any subsequent investigation, notice will be given to the whistleblower, by the club’s DSO or HR Manager to which persons the identity disclosure will be made, with a chance to discuss any likely consequences.
Raising a Concern or Making an Allegation
Anyone wishing to raise a concern should do so either verbally or in writing to the DSO or the Group HR Director.
Notts County’s Designated Safeguarding Officer is Claire Burrows who can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07807 694561 and the Group HR Director is Beverley Markland who can be contacted on 07900 740552 or email@example.com. Both can be contacted in writing to Notts County Football Club, Meadow Lane, Nottingham, NG2 3HJ.
The concern needs to be as specific as possible including any names, dates and locations where possible.
The burden of proof does not lie with the alerter.
If, after the course of an investigation, it has been found that the concerns or allegations are untrue or have not been substantiated then no action will be taken against the whistleblower. If, however, it is established that they have made malicious allegations, disciplinary action may be taken against them. In such cases, NCFC’s disciplinary policy/procedure will apply.
Notts County Football Club (hereinafter referred to as NCFC) acknowledges its responsibility to ensure that all adults involved in Club programs and activities enjoy a positive and respectful environment where they are actively protected from harmful experiences.
NCFC works to ensure that all adults at risk who attend events are employed by or are known to NCFC are protected from abuse and radicalization.
Notts County Football Club’s Safeguarding Adults at Risk Policy:
NCFC recognises its obligations and duty of care when working with adults at risk as set out in national legislation, statutory guidance and sector guidance including:
- Care Act 2014
- Care and Support Statutory Guidance 2014
- Sexual Offences Act 2003
- Equality Act 2010
- Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006
- Protection of Freedoms Act 2012
- Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 (and the Government’s Prevent Strategy)
- Achieving Best Evidence 2002 and 2006
- Domestic Violence Crime and Victims Act 2004
- Mental Capacity Act 2005
- Serious Crime Act 2015
Adult at Risk Definition
An adult at risk is a person over 18‘“A person aged 18 or over who is or may be in need of Community Care Services by reason of mental or other disability, age or illness and who is or may be unable to Care for him or herself or protect him or herself against significant harm or exploitation.”
(‘No Secrets’ DOH)
Examples of a vulnerable adult may be a person who:
- Is elderly and frail
- Suffers from a mental disorder including dementia or a personality disorder
- Has a physical or sensory disability
- Has a learning disability
- Has a severe physical illness
- Has HIV/AIDS
- Is a substance misuser
- Is a carer
- Is homeless
Types of Abuse
Abuse is a violation of another person’s human or civil rights; many incidents of abuse are criminal acts. There are several types of abuse that adults at risk can be victims of:
- Neglect and acts of omission - Ignoring medical, emotional or physical care needs, failure to provide access to appropriate health, care and support or educational services, the withholding of the necessities of life, such as medication, adequate nutrition and heating.
- Sexual abuse- Rape, indecent exposure, sexual harassment, inappropriate looking or touching, sexual teasing or innuendo, sexual photography, subjection to pornography or witnessing sexual acts, indecent exposure and sexual assault or sexual acts to which the adult has not consented or was pressured into consenting
- Physical abuse - Assault, hitting, slapping, pushing, misuse of medication, restraint or inappropriate physical sanction
- Emotional abuse - threats of harm or abandonment, deprivation of contact, humiliation, blaming, controlling, intimidation, coercion, harassment, verbal abuse, cyber bullying, isolation or unreasonable and unjustified withdrawal of services or supportive networks
- Discriminatory abuse including hate crime- Hate crime, forms of harassment, slurs or similar treatment; because of race, gender and gender identity, age, disability, sexual orientation or religion
- Financial abuse - Theft, fraud, internet scamming, coercion about an adult at risk’s financial affairs or arrangements, including in connection with wills, property, inheritance or financial transactions, or the misuse or misappropriation of property, possessions or benefits
- Organisational abuse - Neglect and poor care practice within an institution or specific care setting such as a hospital or care home, for example, or about care provided in one's own home. Examples may range from one-off incidents to on-going ill-treatment. It can be through neglect or poor professional practice as a result of the structure, policies, processes and practices within an organization.
- Domestic violence - Psychological, physical, sexual, financial, emotional abuse; so, called 'honour' based violence; female genital mutilation; stalking and forced marriage.
- Modern slavery - Slavery, human trafficking, forced labour and domestic servitude. Traffickers and slave masters use whatever means they have at their disposal to coerce, deceive and force individuals into a life of abuse, servitude and inhumane treatment.
- Self-neglect - Neglecting to care for one’s hygiene, health or surroundings and includes behaviour such as hoarding.
Key Principles needed regarding Safeguarding Adults at Risk
The Care and Support Statutory Guidance 2015 (Section 14.13) sets out the following six key principles which underpin all adult safeguarding work:
- Empowerment- people being supported and encouraged to make their own decisions and informed consent.
- Prevention is better, to act before harm occurs.
- Proportionality - the least intrusive response appropriate to the risk presented.
- Protection, support and representation for those in greatest need.
- Partnership- local solutions through services working with their communities.
- Accountability and transparency in delivering safeguarding.
Adults at risk are encouraged to make their own decisions and are provided with support and information to empower them to do so. This approach recognises that adults have a general right to independence, choice and self-determination including control over information about themselves.
Staff should ensure that the adult has accessible information so that they can make informed choices about safeguarding: what it means, risks and benefits and consequences. NCFC does not expect staff to support an adult who is felt to be vulnerable or at risk through the decision-making process. NCFC expects staff to inform the Designated Safeguarding Officer as soon as possible so that they can review the option available to ensure the adults safety.
The role of the Designated Safeguarding Officer
Notts County Football Club has appointed a Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO) in line with the EFL’s role profile and required completion of the Safeguarding Children Workshop. The Designated Safeguarding Officer will be the main contact for all safeguarding issues around vulnerable adults.
The Designated Safeguarding Officer’s role includes but is not limited to the following:
- The Designated Safeguarding Officer may take advice form the EFL CPA if required before a decision is made.
- If the Designated Safeguarding Officer and adult decide the allegation/issue needs to refer to a relevant authority, the Designated Safeguarding Officer should empower the adult or contact Adult Services or the LADO by telephone themselves. The Designated Safeguarding Officer will send relevant written back up within 24 hours of the initial disclosure/allegation, if requested. Remembering adults can now make unwise or eccentric decisions, that does not prove they lack capacity to make an informed decision.
- If the adult chooses not to refer the issue on to the appropriate authority and all options have been explored, the Designated Safeguarding Officer will ensure the adult understands the information given to them, retains that information long enough to be able to make the decision, weighs up the information available to make the decision and can communicate their decision by whatever means. If all of this is in place the Designated Safeguarding Officer will record the issues on a central record.
- If the Designated Safeguarding Officer feels there is an emergency or life-threatening situation, other people are or may be, at risk, a serious crime has been committed or maybe prevented ,the risk is unreasonably high or staff are implicated they will make a referral without the consent of the adult at risk.
- The Designated Safeguarding Officer will ensure details of all referrals are passed on to EFL DSO and the Football League case management team within 72 hours
- The Designated Safeguarding Officer should ensure that all written records relating to the incident are kept indefinitely, in a secure location. All electronic records are stored in a restricted area and all incidents are recorded on a central record.
Notts County Football Club’s Designated Safeguarding Officer is Claire Burrows who can be contact on 07807 694561, at firstname.lastname@example.org, the Clubs Designated Safeguarding Lead is Beverley Markland who can be contacted on 07900 740552 or email@example.com and both can be contacted by writing to Notts County Football Club, Meadow Lane, Nottingham, NG2 3HJ.
Any allegation, disclosure or suspicion of abuse needs will be taken seriously and handled in a sensitive manner. Individual members of staff should wherever possible deal with safeguarding disclosures with the help of a Designated Safeguarding Officer or Lead and should always refer to a designated person if available, who will undertake the interview. Information should be strictly limited to those who need to know.
If an adult at risk informs staff that they are concerned about another person’s behaviour towards them, the following process should be followed:
- Take the adult at risk to a safe and quiet place
- Do not promise confidentiality
- React calmly so as not to frighten the adult at risk and let them know they have done the right thing by telling you
- Listen carefully to what is being said
- Keep questions to a minimum, just to clarify what is being said
- Avoid leading questions, prompting or making comments
- Suspend your own judgement – remember that you are not investigating the matter
- If emergency medical treatment or protection from a perpetrator is needed, telephone for ambulance or police immediately
- Staff should make notes of the conversations which may be shared by the investigating agency (e.g. Social Services) including the below.
- If there is evidence of the abuse at NCFC take steps necessary to retain it – e.g.CCTV, clothing, preserve anything that was used to comfort the abused adult at risk, for example, a blanket;
During or immediately after the disclosure record the following:
- Names of those present during the disclosure/allegation
- Address and contact of young person
- Date of birth
- Ethnic origin
- Other agencies already involved
- Date and time of the conversation
- Place where the alleged abuse happened
- Brief description of the allegation
- Any visible injuries
- Any alleged injuries
- The adults preferred action
- Means of contacting the adult
- Next steps and follow up agreed
We endorse and adopt the EFL’s Safeguarding Children Guidelines for Safe Recruitment and this is applied to adults at risk, this outlined in our safeguarding children policy and our recruitment policy.
Notts County Football Club (hereinafter referred to as NCFC) acknowledges its responsibility to safeguard the welfare of every child and young person who has been entrusted to its care and is committed to working to provide a safe environment for all members.
A child or young person is anyone aged 18 or below engaged in any club football activity. We subscribe to the EFL’s Safeguarding Children Policy and Procedures and endorse and adopt the Policy Statement contained in that document.
NCFC expects all members of staff, players and volunteers to adhere to a strict code of conduct and to follow all safeguarding processes to ensure they work safely with all young people. NCFC takes all safeguarding allegations against staff seriously and will comply with Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018. This guidance defines an allegation as a staff member who has:
- behaved in a way that has harmed or may harm a child;
- possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child;
- behaved towards a child / young person in a way that indicates she/he is unsuitable to work with children
For the purposes of clarity, all allegations against staff will be taken seriously particularly if the allegations include:
Behaving in a way that has harmed a child, or may have harmed a child including physically, mentally and emotionally is potentially a criminal offence against or related to a child or vulnerable adult no matter what the nature of that alleged criminal activity.
An act or action against a child or children or adult at risk that raises serious doubt and concern as to the member of staff’s treatment and ability to work with the same
Allegations will be dealt with in line with the appropriate NCFC policies and procedures and can also be made should an individual wish to do so via the Whistleblowing Policy but all will be treated seriously.
NCFC acknowledges that it may be difficult for some people or players to report allegations for many reasons. NCFC will ensure that any one making an allegation will be supported by NCFC by the most appropriate person who is not part of the investigation team
Allegations can be reported to any manager at NCFC including the Academy Manager, the Head of Coaching, the Group HR Director or the Designated Safeguarding Officer. All allegations will be passed on to the Designated Safeguarding Officer
On notification of any safeguarding allegations, the Designated Safeguarding Officer will work with any investigation team to review the incident and to deal with any matters arising out of the same including with reference to all NCFC policies including both grievance and disciplinary. The Designated Safeguarding Officer may ask for additional information, including previous history for behavior by the employee or child/adult at risk, whether there have been previous allegations made and the level of contact the employee has with the child/adult at risk.
On rare occasions the investigation may lead to immediate action, including suspension, if vulnerable parties are thought to be at risk or a criminal act may have taken place
The line manager or Group HR Director will inform the accused member of staff as soon as possible about the allegation, unless a police investigation or children’s social care are involved in the investigation. They will inform NCFC of the information that can be shared and when.
Suspension may take place where a child is at risk of significant harm or the allegations warrant investigation by the police/children services. Suspension is not a punishment, nor does it infer guilt, it is used to protect the club and the staff member until a conclusion can be reached. It is also not NCFC’s first response to an allegation and the following other options will be considered:
- Re-deployment within the Club so the employee has not contact with children/adults at risk
- Providing an assistant to escort the employee while they have contact with children
Should it be felt that suspension is the best outcome the rationale behind this will be recorded, alongside why the above alternatives were not suitable. Written confirmation of the suspension will be sent to the employee within 24 hours of the allegation being made.
If a member of staff tenders their resignation during the investigation it will still continue until it is satisfactorily concluded. No settlement/compromise agreement will take place if an employee resigns whilst under investigation.
Possible outcomes include:
- Call to police to investigate a criminal act
- Referral to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO)
- Notification to the Independent Safeguarding authority
- Referral to Nottinghamshire FA or FA Case Management Team
- Enquiries and assessment by children’s services about whether a child is in need of protection or services.
- Disciplinary action up to and including dismissal
NCFC will comply with any requests made by other authorities e.g. the LADO during the investigation and will provide evidence as requested.
In line with Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 NCFC will define the outcomes of any investigations as-
- Substantiated: there is sufficient evidence to prove the allegation
- Malicious: there is sufficient evidence to disprove the allegation and there has been a deliberate act to deceive
- False: there is sufficient evidence to dis-prove the allegation
- Unsubstantiated: there is insufficient information to either prove or disprove the allegation. The term, therefore, does not imply guilt or innocence
- Unfounded: to reflect cases where there is no evidence or proper basis which supports the allegation being made
This policy refers to players, employees and volunteers who are currently working for the Club, regardless of whether the allegation took place at the Club or elsewhere. Allegations against previous players, employees or volunteers and any allegations of historical abuse will be referred to the Police.
NCFC will make every effort to maintain confidentiality throughout any investigation to protect the young person/adult and the employee, and to ensure the investigation is not compromised by others. Publication of the details of the issue will not be allowed and parents should be aware that if they publish details on social media they will be in breach of legislation that maintains the privacy of any one being investigated by the police or social services. The police will be informed.
Information will be shared with the relevant agencies about both parties. The employee will be asked for consent for the police and children’s services to share their statements etc. with NCFC to aid with any disciplinary investigation
Supporting Those Involved
NCFC has a duty of care towards employees who have allegations made against them and the Group HR Director or Line manager will provide updates and support throughout the process. Employees will be advised to contact their Trade Union, appropriate Associations and resources for counselling. Social contact with colleagues will not be prevented unless this would be detrimental to the investigations taking place.
Parents and carers of those involved will be informed about the allegation as possible if they are not already aware of it. Again, however, if the police or children’s service are involved they will control what kind of information and when this information is passed on to parents/carers. They will also be informed of the outcome of any investigation both criminal or the one that NCFC completes. The hearing, deliberations and information discussed in a disciplinary action however, will not be disclosed. Support for the child/adult at risk will be provided by social services and the police if they are involved or by the Club if not.
The Designated Safeguarding Officer, the Senior Safeguarding Manager and the Group HR director will agree the following for any investigation information distribution -
- Who need to know and what can be shared?
- How to manage speculation, leaks and gossip?
- What, if any, information can be shared to the wider community to reduce speculation?
- How to manage press interest?
The Designated Safeguarding Officer will be responsible for recording all safeguarding issues, updating records and any referrals made. These records will be kept in a locked cabinet with HR and accessible by the Designated Safeguarding Officer and the Group HR Director.
At the end of any allegation investigation the Designated Safeguarding Officer, the Senior Safeguarding Manager and the Group HR director will meet to review the issue and investigation to look at lesson learned, and best practice, policy and procedure may be updated to reflect this.
Useful contacts – to be used only if Designated Safeguarding Officer, Lead and Senior Safeguarding Manager are not available
Nottingham City LADO team
Richard Powell - LADO and covers health, police and all social care referrals including foster carers) – Telephone 0115 8764747
Karen Shead - Supporting childcare (0- 19) 0-19 Safeguarding Co-ordinator – covers childcare, play provision and anywhere else children access – Telephone 0115 8764725
Gillian Quincey - Supporting schools and education settings in relation to safeguarding & allegations – Telephone 0115 8765698
Nottingham City Emergency Duty Team
Telephone: 0115 876 4800
Nottingham County Council LADO team
Strategic issues: Hazel McKibbin, Temporary Service Manage, Safeguarding Children (Strategic) & LADO, telephone: 0115 9773921
Helen Atherton - Non-education, telephone: 0115 8041272
Eva Callaghan - Schools, FE Colleges and Early Years (including nurseries & childminders), telephone: 0115 8041272.
Notts County Council Emergency Duty Team
Telephone - 0300 456 4546
Ali Howie Designated Safeguarding Officer - telephone 07415238880 or 0115 9837400
FA Case Management Team Investigation Team
Telephone 0207 745 4787.
FA NSPCC Helpline
Telephone 0808 800 5000
Alex Richards Safeguarding Manager – telephone 01772 325811
Notts County Football Club (hereinafter referred to as NCFC) acknowledges its responsibility to safeguard the welfare of every child and young person who has been entrusted to its care and is committed to working to provide a safe environment for all members.
A child or young person is anyone aged 18 or below engaged in any club football activity. We subscribe to the EFL’s Safeguarding Children Policy and Procedures and endorse and adopt the Policy Statement contained in that document.
NCFC expects all members of staff, players and volunteers to adhere to a strict code of conduct and to follow all safeguarding processes to ensure they work safely with all young people.
Poor practice is unacceptable and will be treated seriously with appropriate action including the disciplinary policy. Any behaviour that contravenes our Codes of Conduct, infringes an individual’s rights and/or reflects a failure to fulfil NCFC’s normal high standards of care and welfare is classed as poor practice.
On occasions, a child or adult at risk may not be aware that poor practice is taking place, as they may deem the behaviour as normal or ‘how it’s always been’.
If the poor practice is serious and liable to cause harm it will be dealt with using the allegations against staff policy with reference to the safeguarding policy.
NCFC therefore believes that it is not solely the responsibility of the child or adult at risk to raise concerns about the poor of our staff. All staff, volunteers and players at NCFC have a responsibility to raise concerns about the practice of others if required
Poor practice can be reported to any manager at NCFC including the Academy Manager, the Head of Coaching, the Group HR Director or the Designated Safeguarding Officer. All issues will be passed on to the Designated Safeguarding Officer.
On notification of any issues around practice, the Designated Safeguarding Officer will work with an investigation team to review the incident and to deal with any matters arising out of the same including with reference to all NCFC policies including both grievance and disciplinary.
If a member of staff tenders their resignation during the investigation it will continue until it is satisfactorily concluded.
In line with the allegations policy NCFC will define the outcomes of any investigations as-
- Substantiated: there is sufficient evidence to prove the allegation
- Malicious: there is sufficient evidence to disprove the allegation and there has been a deliberate act to deceive
- False: there is sufficient evidence to dis-prove the allegation
- Unsubstantiated: there is insufficient information to either prove or disprove the allegation. The term, therefore, does not imply guilt or innocence
- Unfounded: to reflect cases where there is no evidence or proper basis which supports the allegation being made
NCFC will make every effort to maintain confidentiality throughout any investigation to protect the discloser and the staff member, and to ensure the investigation is not compromised by others.
The Designated Safeguarding Officer will be responsible for recording all practice issues, updating records and any referrals made. These records will be kept in a locked cabinet with HR or a restricted drive on the server and accessible by the Designated Safeguarding Officer and the Group HR Director.
Examples of poor practice (not an exclusive list)
- Unnecessarily spending too much time with a child/children alone or away from others
- Being alone in changing rooms, toilet facilities or showers used by children and young people
- Taking children or young people to staff’s home or hotel where they will be alone with staff
- Allowing children or young people to use inappropriate language unchallenged or fail to report extremist language and views that indicate radicalization
- Allowing bullying of any kind to continue unchecked including inappropriate ‘banter’
- Allowing children or young people to take part in ‘play fighting’ unchallenged.
- Not taking seriously allegations of abuse, harm or poor practice made by a child or about a child, and/or not reporting the issue to the relevant staff.
- Adding a child to personal social media or use of staff’s personal mobile phone or other electronic devices, to communicate with them.
- Practices on the verge of abuse, if repeated would amount to abuse e.g. name calling, constant criticism, excessive pressure
- Breaches of the Codes of Conduct exceeding the level of competence, excessive training, inappropriate supporting or stretching
- Making sexually suggestive comments to a young person, even in fun
- Reducing a young person to tears as a form of control
Please click here to view our equality quide.
Notts County's equality statement can be found here.
Three points isn't the only priority on matchday. Making sure everyone goes home safely is the most important result.
Following the dreadful Manchester Arena bombing, stadium managers from clubs have been briefed by counter-terrorism police.
It is vital that everyone - players, staff and supporters - remain vigilant and report any concerns to stewards or police.
Attacks may be rare and the chance of you being caught up in one is unlikely, but the message is #ActionCountersTerrorism.
Here's what you can do to help keep yourself and others safe:
• Arrive early, allowing more time for security checks
• Minimise what you carry - fewer bag searches will speed up entry to the ground
• Be vigilant at all times and if you see anything suspicious, tell a steward immediately
• If you see anything that could pose an immediate threat to safety, call 999
• In an emergency, listen to the public address instructions and follow them
• If told to evacuate, do so immediately. Do not wait around to film events on your mobile
• Move away from the stadium as quickly as possible for your safety and to allow clear access for any emergency vehicles
• Once you are safe, follow the local police force on Twitter for updates
Notts County Football Club strives to achieve the highest standards of customer service for all its spectators and customers who use the Club. The Club will take all complaints seriously and the following process is in place to deal with any issues or complaints.
Customer Service Contact
Where possible, initial contact regarding any query or complaint should, in the first instance, be made to the head of the appropriate department. However, should the customer be unable to contact the relevant head of department, or should they not be satisfied after so doing, the designated customer service contact at the club is:
Name: Beverley Markland-Group HR Director
Address: Notts County FC, Meadow Lane Stadium, Meadow Lane, Nottingham, NG2 3HJ
Tel: 0115 952 9000
Contact may be made by telephone, letter or email as detailed above.
Timeline of Response
The club undertakes to acknowledge receipt of any complaint or query within 24 hours, or one working day, of receiving any correspondence. We endeavour to respond to any contact from any supporter, normally within a maximum of seven working days.
Every effort will be made to respond as soon as possible and particularly so if the nature of any communication warrants an urgent or early reply. Response may be by telephone, letter or email as deemed appropriate.
If you are not happy with the outcome of the response, you are welcome to appeal any decision and the complaint will be escalated higher and you can expect a response within 14 days.
The Independent Football Ombudsman
Should any correspondent be dissatisfied with the club's response after 28 days, they can refer the matter straight to the IFO.
The Independent Football Ombudsman
Suite 49, 33 Great George Street
Tel: 0800 588 4066