In 2017, the U.S. Congress & Senate, passed S.534, in reaction to rampant sexual abuse discovered in Olympics Gymnastics, in 2016. On February 14, 2018, S.534, the 'Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act' was signed into law. This law is a mixture of new legislation, combined with modifying existing federal statutes, to form a broad new mechanism for protecting youth sports players from emotional, physical, bullying/hazing, and sexual abuse, nation wide.
Victims of Child Abuse Act of 1990
Amateur Sports Act of 1978
Both of these laws, which covered child abuse, were incorporated into the new law
minors regarding prevention and reporting of child abuse. Covered Organizations shall track:
1. A description of the training(s);
2. The date the training(s) was offered and given; and
3. A description of how the training(s) was offered and given.
Cal North State Risk Manager Reporting Line (925) 400-8030
U.S. Center for Safe Sport https://safesport.org/report-a-concern
U.S. Soccer integrity hotline https://www.ussoccer.com/integrity-hotline
(Phone: 312 528-7004 )
Local Police/Sheriff Dept., or Child Protective Services
( NOTE: For the above, ALL must be notified )
The U.S. Center for SafeSport is an independent nonprofit committed to ending all forms of abuse in sport. This includes bullying, harassment, hazing, physical abuse, emotional abuse, and sexual misconduct and abuse. The Center is the first and only national organization of its kind.
The U.S. Center for SafeSport has created online youth training courses. These courses are for children of pre-school age, grades K-2, grades 3-5, and middle school and high school. These free online training courses are designed as an introduction for minor athletes and their parents or other caregivers to understand the importance of positive, welcoming environments in sports, where misconduct like bullying or abuse is less likely to happen, and to know where to report abuse, should it occur. These courses fulfill the SafeSport Act requirement for an organization to provide a means for training youth athletes in abuse, with authorization from their parent.
Each course is hosted on athletesafety.org and requires that a parent/legal guardian create an account to provide consent for their child to access the training. Once an account is created, parents can choose which course is best for their child based on their actual or developmental age. Each course will take less than 30 minutes to complete.
All of the mandated provisions within the SafeSport Act also apply to youth referees. Referee assignors will need to follow the same mandated provisions for working with youth referees, as coaches have to do with youth athletes. Referee assignors must also take the abuse training course, as coaches are required to do, and are also mandated reporters.
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All reports of misconduct are taken with the utmost sensitivity and as discreetly as possible. Reporting may be made anonymously at no cost. Cal North does not tolerate retaliation of any kind. No individual who makes a good faith report will be subject to retaliation, including harassment, or any adverse employment or participation consequence, as a result of making a report.
In the event that you make a report of suspected child abuse to law enforcement, the U.S. Center for SafeSport, or another authority, Cal North encourages you not to make an anonymous report, simply because an anonymous report will not provide you with evidence that you discharged your mandatory reporting obligation.
The law was designed to ensure that a solid platform existed for ensuring abuse protection, recognition and education, with a defined mechanism for incident handling and reporting. The new law incorporates a mandatory 24 hour reporting period for an abuse incident. The inclusion of a ten year extension for an athlete to report an abuse incident was included to ensure that a victim's right to report and seek adjudication was maintained. The new law focuses on the key aspect of recognizing abuse grooming techniques, to help prevent an actual abuse situation from happening, as well as recognizing the signs of abuse. The law seeks to push the preventative aspect of a potential abuse situation, rather than being reactive to an abuse situation which has already occurred. For this purpose, the law dictates that all adult parties that come into contact with youth athletes must be educated in grooming techniques, and recognition of abuse signs. This same education must be provided to youth, with consent from parents. Sports organizations must design, and publish an abuse policy to all parties within their organization, staff, and parents.
It is required that incident information be safeguarded, and protected from dissemination. The 'Risk Manager' will need to insure that all incident information is protected from viewing by members of their family. Encryption methodology can be used, or creation of an account on a home computer which is secured from access by other family members. This is for protection of the incident reporter, the alleged victim, and the accused party, as required by law.
U.S. Center for Safe Sports - PODCASTS
Podcast #1 – National Governing Body 101
Podcast #2 – Child Abuse in Sports: A Podcast for Athletes (and Parents/Guardians Too!)
Podcast #3 – Child Abuse in Sports: A Podcast for Parent/Guardians
Podcast #4 – What I Wish I Knew Before My Child Joined the Team
Under the SafeSport Act, all members of District VIII are required to provide the following:
6. Extends the abuse reporting time deadline to ten years after the alleged incident, or ten years after the athlete turns 18 years of age.
7. Established that an abuse incident must be reported within 24 hours after discovery.
The major organizational types covered by this new law were distinguished as Olympics Sports Organizations, Paralympic Sports Organization, 'Non-NGB' organizations, and 'NGB' organizations. The term 'NGB' standing for 'National Governing Body'. As 'Paralympic Sports'/Olympic Sports do not apply to District VIII, this will not be discussed. The distinction between Non-NGB organizations and NGB organizations was defined by the manner in which play was conducted. Non-NGB organizations were defined as those that do not participate in interstate, or international competitions, while NGB organizations are those that do participate in interstate and international play.
For all leagues/clubs/associations within Cal North, District VIII, they belong to California Soccer Association North, which is a sanctioned member of the organization, U.S. Soccer, and USYS, who are NGB organizations. All requirements in the SafeSport Act, required for members of an NGB organization, are mandated for all District VIII leagues/clubs/associations.