Through ‘Australian Cricket’s Framework for Safeguarding Children and Young People’ (Framework) Cricket Australia, State and Territory Cricket Associations (collectively Australian Cricket), associations and clubs aim to provide a safe and nurturing environment for all Children and Young People.
The Framework includes:
Australian Cricket’s Policy for Safeguarding Children & Young People
Australian Cricket’s Looking After Our Kids Code of Behaviour
Australian Cricket’s Statement of Commitment to Safeguarding Children & Young People
To start your club or association must adopt and endorse all three documents at your next available committee meeting. Example wording for committee endorsement can be found below.
The [INSERT ASSOCIATION/CLUB] endorse and adopt:
Australian Cricket’s Policy for Safeguarding Children and Young People, Australian Cricket’s ‘Looking After Our Kids’ Code of Behaviour for Affiliated Associations and Clubs, and Australian Cricket’s Commitment to Safeguarding Children and Young People, effective as at [date].
To help implement the Framework, Cricket Victoria has created a Child Safety User Guide. You can use this guide and the steps below to ensure your club is creating a safe environment for Children & Young People.
Once you endorse & adopt the Framework, spread the word and promote what you stand for. You can do this by:
Email your members about the club endorsing and adopting Australian Cricket’s Framework for Safeguarding Children & Young People and what actions your club is taking to keep Children & Young People safe.
Upload the documents onto your website for all your members to see. To find out how to upload the documents to your website, click here.
Display Child Safety posters around the clubrooms. Australian Cricket’s Child Safety posters can be found here.
Host a session with your members outlining the clubs expectations around Children & Young People. You may wish to share with your members the Code of Behaviour Summary Cricket Victoria has created to breakdown what is expected of those involved within cricket.
Appoint a Child Safety Officer to champion the child safety message and implement practices and procedures in line with Australian Cricket’s Looking After Our Kids Code of Behaviour for Safeguarding Children & Young People.
This role can also report to the committee and be the first point of contact for all safeguarding Children and Young People matters.
A detailed Position Description for the role can be found here.
For those look for training or upskilling for this role, you can complete the Child Protection online course via Play By The Rules here.
Recruitment & Screening
Cricket Victoria strongly recommends that clubs and associations implement recruitment and screening practices for roles that are in leadership positions or that are likely to interact with Children or Young People as part of that role. A full list of roles can be found in clause 8 of Australian Cricket’s Policy for Safeguarding Children & Young People.
Recruitment and screening practices include:
When advertising the role, highlight that the clubs is “committed to providing a safe environment for children” and that “we require all applicants to undergo background checks and screening prior to or during any appointments. Australian Cricket’s Commitment Statement to Safeguarding Children and Young People can be found here.
Attach the Commitment Statement to Safeguarding Children & Young People to position descriptions of roles that require contact with Children and Young People.
Conduct at least one face to face or video link interview where an applicant is applying for a role that requires contact or interaction with Children and Young People
Receive proof of their identity and qualifications relevant to the advertised role and evidence of their suitability to work with Children and Young People upon being offered the role.
Along with receiving an applicants valid Working With Children Check, consider the application of other background and screening steps, such as reference checks, Member Protection Declaration form, education & training, past employment and engagements and National Criminal History Check.
CricketVictoria has a range of resources that help clubs implement recruitment & screening practices to ensure clubs and associations appoint the most appropriate people to work with Children & Young People.
Update your registration forms to contain the following acknowledgment, both online and paper based, which is to be agreed by all club members:
“I agree to be bound by any Codes of Behaviour and policies of [INSERT YOUR CLUB/ASSOCIATION] for the time being in force, including Australian Cricket’s ‘Looking After Our Kids’ Code of Behaviour for Affiliated Associations and Clubs.”
If your club uses online registration through MyCricket Administration and the PlayCricket website, your participants will automatically be asked to agree to the Codes of Behaviour. To find out how to set up an online registration form, see the MyCricket Support website.
Code of Behaviour
Ensuring all members at your club and association are aware of the appropriate Codes of Behaviour is critical, as it outlines what conduct is appropriate and in-appropriate around Children & Young People.
As part of these Codes of Behaviour, there are requirements to receive parent or guardian permission and consent for issues such as transportation to cricket events outside of a child or young persons parent or guardian and image consent.
Photographs are not to be taken unless the Child or Young Person’s parent or guardian has provided prior approval and images are not to be distributed or published without the parent or guardians knowledge and approval.
An approval form should be provided to a Club or Association nominated Person in Authority, specifying who may pick up their child from training and matches. Where this is not possible, the parent or guardian should send a text message or email to the team coach, team manager and Person in Authority providing approval.
To simplify this process, Cricket Victoria has created template questions that can be included in a clubs online registration forms.
In 2021, Cricket Victoria ran focus groups in conjunction with some of our regional and metropolitan clubs to hear directly from Children & Young People about how they feel safe (and less safe) within cricket and how clubs can further empower them to speak up about issues important to them. The focus groups taught us a lot. From them, we now know that Children & Young People in cricket:
more than anything, just want to have fun;
understand more than we might think about emotions and the behaviour of other kids;
want to be heard, valued and included;
like to be involved – particularly young people, who want to make a difference and give back to the club that has meant so much and has given so much to them;
have great suggestions for their clubs!
have trust in each other and will often talk to their teammates if they aren’t feeling good or are unsure about something;
if concerns arise, will talk to a trusted adult, rather than a designated role such as a Child Safety Officer or other administrator who they don’t know as well; and
generally trust and will talk to adults who listen authentically and value their views.
From the focus groups we have created resources to help clubs engage and empower children and young people to speak up when they feel less safe and provide suggestions to the club to improve their experience and that of others.
In a global and domestic context that is increasingly reliant on online connection and education, the safety of our children in the sporting cyber world is now more critical than ever. The below resources will help your club, children & young people and their parents to manage the e-safety risks.