Safeguarding in sport has been in the spotlight in recent weeks, following the publication of the Sheldon Report and Interim Report from the Whyte Review, which was jointly commissioned by us and UK Sport to examine issues facing gymnastics.
We believe everyone involved in sport should feel they can take part in a safe, positive and trusted environment, and this is especially important when it comes to our children and young people.
Although the vast majority of sports and activities do create safe, positive and enjoyable experiences and safeguarding issues are relatively rare, when they do occur they can have a long-term and devastating impact on people’s lives. That’s why it’s a priority area for us, as set out in our new strategy, Uniting the Movement.
Although we’re not a regulator of sport, we have an important role to play in ensuring that safeguarding, effective governance and workforce best practice are at the forefront of the work our partners do in delivering sport and physical activity.
We welcome the government’s proposed changes to the law around positions of trust, which seek to add sports coaches and other positions supervising sport and physical activity to the existing list of positions of trust.
If the proposed legislation is passed by Parliament, it’ll make it illegal for people in these positions to have sex with 16 and 17-year-olds in their care.
This is an incredibly important step forward in tightening safeguarding procedures, but there’s more for us all to do, and we recognise this work requires ongoing support and investment.