SafeSport has released four updated policies relating to how minors and adults are set to interact. The four updated polices cover a host of topics including travel (team and local), one-on-one interactions, and massages and rubdowns. Over the coming weeks USA Rugby will release information surrounding each policy update. Here is the second of four.
To view the policy update on massages and rubdowns click here.
Spending one-on-one time with trusted adults is healthy and valuable for the development of a child. Unfortunately, it is in these situations where the majority of child sexual abuse occurs. If you are able to reduce the amount of time adults and minors are left alone in a setting together, you are able to mitigate the chances of an incident occurring. The policy updates are aimed at protecting the children, while also allowing these beneficial relationships to take place.
The policy applies to adults at a facility, event or team activity under USA Rugby, or USA Rugby member organization’s jurisdiction. It applies to adult members with regular contact with amateur minor athletes, adults authorized by covered organizations and staff or board members of USA Rugby or one of their member organizations.
Every one-on-one interaction between a minor and adult (who is not a legal guardian of the minor) are only ever permitted if they are conducted at an observable and interruptible distance from another adult. The only time an isolated one-on-one interaction is permitted is under emergency circumstances.
Meetings between adults and minors at USA Rugby facilities, events or team activities must only be conducted if another adult is present, unless it is an emergency. Meetings must be easily observable and at an interruptible distance from another adult. If the meeting is taking place in any enclosed location such as offices, meeting rooms or hotel rooms, the door must remain open and unlocked at all times. If the location has windows, the windows must be unobstructed and clearly seen through at all times.
If a minor is meeting with a mental health care professional a closed door is permitted, so long as the following requirements are met:
1) The door remains unlocked
2) Another adult is present at the facility
3) The other adult is aware a closed door meeting is taking place
4) The legal guardian has provided written consent for the meeting to occur with a copy of written permission given to USA Rugby.
Individual training sessions are permitted on our facilities so long it is observable and conducted at an interruptible distance. Before the session can take place, the legal guardian must provide written consent. The guardian must be able to observe the session, and permission must be renewed every six months.
When one-on-one interactions are occurring, another adult must monitor the situation. Monitoring includes, knowing the interaction is taking place, the approximate planned duration of the interaction, and randomly dropping in on the interactions.
Unless written consent by the legal guardian is provided, it is prohibited to meet with an unrelated minor athlete in settings outside of the program. Such settings include: one’s home, restaurants, and individual transportation. While these are allowed if written permission is obtained, they are still nonetheless highly discouraged.
For More information on SafeSport and their policies click here.