Statement of Intent
We are committed to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment for all of our staff, players and their families so they can participate in football in a relaxed and secure atmosphere. Bullying of any kind is unacceptable. If bullying does occur, all staff, players and their families should be able to report and know that the incident/s will be dealt with promptly and effectively.
What is bullying?
Bullying is the use of aggression with the intention of hurting another person. Bullying results in pain and distress to the victim. Bullying can be:
- Emotional – being unfriendly, excluding (emotionally and physically) sending hurtful text messages, tormenting, (e.g. hiding football boots/shin guards, threatening gestures)
- Physical pushing, kicking, hitting, punching or any use of violence
- Racist – racial taunts, graffiti, gestures
- Sexist – because of, or focussing on the issue of sex or gender of an individual
- Sexual – unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive comments
- Homophobic – because of, or focussing on the issue of sexuality
- Verbal – name-calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours, teasing
Why is it important to respond to bullying?
Bullying hurts. 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. At We Make Footballers our aim is to make GREAT footballers who can both play well but also have the right attitude – this policy sits as a cornerstone of this.
Objectives of this policy
- All staff, coaches, volunteers, parent hosts and parents/carers should have an understanding of what bullying is
- All staff, coaches, volunteers and parent hosts should know what the WMF policy is on bullying, and follow it when bullying is reported
- All players and parents/carers should know what the WMF policy is on bullying, and what they should do if bullying arises
- As WMF we take bullying seriously
- Players and parents/carers should be assured that they would be supported when bullying is reported
- Bullying will not be tolerated
- This policy must be adhered to by the owner of a franchise, the academy managers the coaches, volunteers, parents hosts, players and all their supporters
- Failure to follow this policy will lead to disciplinary action such as, a franchise being revoked, being passed through the disciplinary process (gross misconduct), being asked to stop playing.
Signs and Indicators
A child may indicate by signs or behaviour that he or she is being bullied. Adults should be aware of these possible signs and that they should investigate if a child:
- says he or she is being bullied
- is unwilling to go to training sessions
- becomes withdrawn anxious, or lacking in confidence
- feels ill before training sessions
- comes home with clothes torn or training equipment damaged
- has possessions go ‘missing’
- asks for money or starts stealing money (to pay the bully)
- has unexplained cuts or bruises
- is frightened to say what’s wrong
- gives improbable excuses for any of the above.
In more extreme cases:
- starts stammering
- cries themselves to sleep at night or has nightmares
- becomes aggressive, disruptive or unreasonable
- is bullying other children or siblings
- stops eating
- attempts or threatens suicide or runs away
These signs and behaviours may indicate other problems, but bullying should be considered a possibility and should be investigated.
- Report bullying incidents to the We make Footballers WFO or a senior member of staff
- In cases of serious bullying, the incidents will be referred to the CPO/Police for advice
- Parents should be informed and will be asked to come in to a meeting to discuss the problem
- If necessary and appropriate, the Police will be consulted
- The bullying behaviour or threats of bullying must be investigated and the bullying stopped quickly
- An attempt will be made to help the bully (bullies) change their behaviour
- If mediation fails and the bullying is seen to continue WMF will initiate disciplinary action
In the rare case of an adult reported to be bullying anyone within WMF under 18 please call Sean Conlon on 02071481602 immediately. He will agree to meet with all parties and the police will be contacted if required.
If any adult is feeling bullied within the organisation then they must contact Sean Conlon immediately who will agree to meet with them and mediate between parties.