Important Welfare issues – advice for clubs

Saturday 27th May 2017

Spikes on track

scottishathletics works with national partners, sportscotland and Children1st, to ensure there are processes in place to deal with and support victims of abuse.

There is a robust system in place for supporting clubs, volunteers and young people, which must be adhered to, and more information can be found on the links at the foot of this article.

Our primary objective is to prevent unsuitable people coming into athletics to harm children and young people.

We have already issued details of steps which all scottishathletics clubs should be taking to put into practice the right processes on PVG-checks for coaches and so on.

There are a couple of other areas, as well, we would like to draw your attention to and these are: photography and video at events and training and general social media guidelines for coaches and clubs.

*Photography and video

Clubs should be committed to providing a safe environment for children/young people under the age of 18. Essential to this commitment, is to ensure that all necessary steps are taken to protect children/young people from the inappropriate use of their images in resource and media publications, on the internet, and elsewhere.

Photographs can be used as a means of identifying children and young people when they are accompanied with personal information, for example: this is X who is a member of Hometown Athletic Club who likes Westlife and supports Manchester United.

This kind of information being made public can make a child vulnerable to an individual who may wish to start to ‘groom’ that child for abuse.

Secondly, the content of the photo can be used or adapted for inappropriate use.

While this is rare in athletics, there is evidence of adapted material finding its way onto child pornography sites. Athletics Clubs and County Associations therefore need to develop a policy in relation to the use of images of children/young people on their web sites and in other publications.

When assessing the potential risks in the use of images of athletes, the most important factor is the potential of inappropriate use of images of children.

*Social Media for Coaches and Clubs

We have highlighted previously the importance of how clubs set up social media accounts (such as a Facebook page) and supplied guidelines on how coaches should administer such pages. We are keen to flag these again.

On our Welfare and Child Protection page, at the bottom there is a section called ‘Staying Safe online’

Lodged there are two documents which are well worth a read:

*‘Guidance on setting up club social media accounts’

*‘Social Media and Digital comms guidance for coaches’.

If you have inquiries on any of the above issues, please contact Jim Goldie on 07739 506733 or by email

Jim Goldie – point of contact on Welfare issues

All allegations that come into scottishathletics are taken seriously and thoroughly investigated, and where appropriate, referred to the police or other agency.

More information:

On this website – welfare and child protection procedures

On the Victim Support website

On the Children1st website


Tags: Child Protection, Jim Goldie, scottishathletics, Welfare

Expand Social Feeds