An important role for administrators’ is to reduce the potential for things to go wrong. There are a number of resources to assist clubs to identify risks and develop an action plan to ensure child safe and harassment free environments.

Key strategies to consider when developing your action plan include:

  • Providing leadership to develop a welcoming and inclusive club.
  • Developing or adopt Member Protection or other welfare policies and codes of behaviour.
  • Ensuring the Constitution and membership rules do not result in members being treated unfairly (e.g. different classes of membership being available to men and women).
  • Ensuring selection and other club decisions are fair and not based on stereotypes and irrelevant characteristics (e.g. when hiring staff or in team selection).
  • Choosing the right people and ensure coaches and other personnel meet child protection requirements;
  • Developing or adopt guidelines that support coaches and other personnel to provide safe environments for participation, particularly for children;
  • Communicating policies and procedures to all personnel and members – including any screening and mandatory reporting responsibilities, who to complain to and how complaints will be dealt with
  • Providing education and training for administrators, coaches and other personnel to support them in their role;
  • Taking complaints about discrimination, harassment and abuse seriously and act quickly.

Risk Management

Sport plays a big part in many people’s lives whether they’re participants, observers or club members. Today risk management is an accepted part of sport administration and clubs and associations need to have strategies in place to meet legal and insurance requirements. One of the principal risks they need to address relates to club member behaviour and the potential for discrimination, harassment and child abuse.

By taking a broad approach to risk management and creating positive and inclusive clubs, administrators can minimise the risks and maximise the benefits associated with their sport (e.g. increased participation). Everyone is responsible for contributing to this environment.

The Australian Sports Commission has done a great deal of work on club development in recent years. The Australian Sports Commission has designed an online assessment tool called the Club Health Check. It aims to help sporting clubs examine how they are operating and identify areas of improvement.

The Club Health Check looks at a number of factors that are crucial to success, and combines these results to build an overall picture of the way your club carries out its operations. The Club Health Check is the first step in growing your club and helping to make it sustainable.

The online assessment should take no longer than 30 minutes to complete. We recommend two or three people from your club complete the online assessment together. Once you have completed the assessment, a detailed report will be emailed to you. This report will identify improvements and growth areas for your organisation.

Follow the link to start the Club Health Check.

The ASC also has a number of risk management tools and resources for clubs, including fire protection, security, protection against fraud or theft, risk of personal injury and natural disaster planning. To access the range of resources developed by the ASC go to here.