The Guernsey FA is committed to working to make football in the island a safe and enjoyable experience for all and this includes ensuring that appropriate safeguards exist with open-age adult football. In 2019, the FA provided updated guidance regarding safeguarding for 16 and 17 year old players within open-age adult teams and the GFA is pleased that local clubs have recognised the responsibilities they have to ensure appropriate safeguards have been implemented.
One example of the great work in this area is Guernsey Rovers, who have ensured that all coaches working with open-age teams have completed an FA DBS Check. Guernsey FA Chief Executive Officer, and Senior Safeguarding Lead, Gary Roberts, commented:
“It is pleasing to see that local clubs are continuing to extend the safeguards already adopted for youth football into open-age football. Guernsey Rovers are a great example of completing a detailed process that has included reviewing the existing safeguards in place across all aspects of the club’s open-age adult teams, retaining a Safeguarding Children Policy and ensuring that all coaches attached to open-age teams have completed the FA DBS check, irrespective of whether a team currently includes 16 and 17 year olds. This proactive measure ensures the club is compliant with the requirements to safeguard children in open-age football”
Guernsey Rovers Secretary and Assistant Welfare Officer, Chris Lihou, commented that:
“As a FA Chartered Standard Club providing football for all ages, from Adults and Veterans to U18’s right down to U6's, we recognise our duty and responsibility to safeguard the welfare of every child and young person who has been entrusted to our care. We ensure that as a minimum all of our coaches hold an in-date FA accepted Enhanced DBS Check. This includes all of our Senior Team Coaches who more often than not are responsible for 16 & 17 year olds playing in our “Open Age” teams. We believe that this underpins our strong commitment in working towards a safe environment for all of our members.”
For more information about safeguarding in open-age football, please click here