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Safety of a Different Kind
May 02, 2012
Bullying, sexual harassment and other types of emotional and physical abuse are not typically the topics that come to mind when we think about the safety of our athletes, but unfortunately, we need to. USRowing has partnered with two programs, Respect in Sport and the National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI) to bring your organization tools to help educate and screen your coaches and volunteers.
As a service organization, we believe it is important for our members to have access to services that will benefit their organization as a whole. In providing these services, we hope that we will be able to avoid circumstances that may be harmful for youth rowers. We are looking to ensure the highest level of safety for youth rowers to promote safe and successful programs.
The Respect in Sport Coach and Activity Leader Program is a tool to assist coaches, volunteers and referees in identifying and dealing with abuse, bullying, harassment and neglect in sport and respond to and report negative behaviors, if necessary. USRowing is one of several national governing bodies to implement this program, which has been utilized by organizations such as USA Triathlon, Hockey Canada and Gymnastics Canada. Respect in Sport uses an Internet-based training experience that is simple, to the point and captivating for the learner. It takes about two hours to complete. The fee is $30 for coaches and volunteers.
The NCSI program brings your organization tools to help educate and screen your coaches and volunteers. It provides discounted background checks for all employees and volunteers working with youth rowers.
We hope that organizations will take advantage of these simple tools to help administrators, coaches, referees and volunteers recognize and eliminate situations that can emotional damage to athletes and institutional damage to our sport.
The Respect in Sport program can be linked to from the Coaches page on the USRowing website [http://www.usrowing.org/DomesticRowing/Coaches/RespectSportCoach.aspx] and the NCSI program can be linked to from the Organization Benefits page in the Members Only section [http://www.usrowing.org/MembersOnly/OrgMemberProgramsBenefits/NCSI.aspx].
USRowing Safety Committee:
Willie Black, USRowing Staff Liaison