Child protection is about keeping children and young people safe from abuse and protecting them from people who are identified as unsuitable to work with children. All children have a right to be safe when participating in sport and recreation activities. While there is no national law, all states and territories have child protection laws to keep children safe and protect them from abuse.

In 2016 the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in Case Study 39, focused on sport. The scope and purpose of the public hearing was to inquire into:

  • The experiences of men and women who were sexually abused as children in sporting clubs;
  • The response of Tennis Australia, Tennis NSW and the New South Wales Institute of Sport to allegations of child sexual abuse by a tennis coach;
  • The response of Football NSW to allegations of child sexual abuse by a soccer coach;
  • The systems, policies, practices and procedures in relation to child protection and for receiving, investigating and responding to allegations of child sexual abuse promoted and implemented by a number of federal, state and local sports agencies, associations and clubs.

The hearing prompted many sports agencies and associations to review their systems, policies and practices to ensure they are child safe. There is undoubtedly an increased requirement by sport and recreation clubs and associations to have a greater awareness of child abuse, a commitment to child safe practices and the ability to respond to suspicions of harm.

You can download a copy of the Royal Commission Report into sport here. Furthermore, you may be interested in the Royal Commission Report into Swimming to read as an interesting case study. You can download that here

  • Child Protection Laws explained

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    There is no national legislation and child protection system. However each state and territory has child protection laws specifying responsibilities for both organisations and individuals who work or have contact with children. This section includes mandatory reporting and Working With Children Check requirements.

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  • Child Protection Online Course

    Child Protection online course screen

    The Child Protection online training course is free and suitable for players, volunteers, coaches, officials and administrators in sport. The course has many interactive components and you will receive a certificate of completion when you complete all elements. Help ensure your sport is child safe and get started today.

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  • Indicators of child Abuse

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    It is important that people working with children are aware of the indicators of abuse and have the confidence to respond to any indication that a child may have been abused.

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  • Strategies for clubs coaches and parents

    Sports clubs and Association have a responsibility to keep children safe. Some general strategies can go a long way to ensuring that your club creates a child safe environment

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  • Taking images or video of children at sporting events

    Taking photographs or video of children is an area that many people feel uncomfortable about and do not know how to handle. There are some guidelines you can use to ensure your sport handles the issue appropriately.

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  • Types of Child Abuse

    There are a number of different types of child abuse, not only sexual abuse. Understanding about the different types of child abuse will help you spot indicators of abuse in your sport

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  • What is Child Abuse?

    Bullying in sport

    Do you have a good understanding of child abuse? Child abuse can cause long-lasting emotional, physical and behavioural damage. Sport can be particularly vulnerable for child abuse

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