Reporting a concern is everyone’s responsibility.
Anyone who has a concern about;
- the welfare of a child, or
- the behaviour of an adult towards a child or young person in football must report this at the earliest opportunity to ensure the appropriate course of action can be taken.
Anyone who has a child protection or poor practice concern should report to their Club Welfare Officer (CWO). If the concern is about the CWO the matter should be reported to senior management within the club. Guidance is available from the Irish FA Safeguarding Department via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Although most of the issues you will deal with in relation to safeguarding will be issues of poor practice rather than abuse, it is still essential to respond appropriately and promptly. It is a culture of poor practice that is not child centred, and where concerns are not dealt with, that opens the door to possible abuse occurring. Refer to the Irish FA Safeguarding Children and Young People in Football Policy for further information making sure all concerns are recorded.
Dealing with suspected poor practice and/or possible abuse in Irish FA programmes
Dealing with possible poor practice and/or abuse within your club (outside Irish FA programmes)
Northern Ireland Health and Social Care Trusts
Each trust will have a Gateway team to deal with reports of abuse and provide local contacts for ongoing professional liaison for advice on concerns.
Gateway Numbers (9am – 5pm)
Northern HSC Trust
South Eastern HSC Trust
Southern HSC Trust
Belfast HSC Trust
Tel: 028 90 507000
Western HSC Trust
Tel: 028 71314090
Regional Emergency Social Work service is available at evenings and weekends with 24-hour cover over public holidays at 028 9504 9999.
PSNI Central Referral Unit Tel: 02890 259299
PSNI General Enquiry Tel: 101
In the event of an emergency Tel: 999
Child Protection in Sport Unit - Tel: 028 90 351135
NSPCC - Tel: 0808 800 5000
Childline - 0800 1111