Statement of intent
We are committed to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment for all of our children so they can train, and play, in a relaxed and secure atmosphere. Bullying of any kind is unacceptable at our club. If bullying does occur, all children should be able to tell, and know incidents will be dealt with promptly and effectively. We are a TELLING club. This means anyone who knows bullying is happening is expected to tell someone who can do something about it.
What is bullying?
Bullying is the use of aggression with the intention of hurting another person. Bullying results in pain and distress to the victim.
Bullying can take many forms:
- being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting (for example: hiding kit, or making threatening gestures)
- pushing, hitting, kicking, punching or any use of violence
- racial taunts, graffiti and/or gestures
- unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive comments
- because of, or focusing on, the issue of sexuality
- name-calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours and teasing
- bullying behaviour online or via electronic communication (email and text, social media etc). Misuse of associated technology, such as camera and video facilities
Why is it important to respond to bullying?
Bullying hurts. No one should be a victim of bullying. Everyone has the right to be treated with respect. Children who are bullying also need to learn different ways of behaving. Cricket clubs have a responsibility to respond promptly, and effectively, to issues of bullying.
Objectives of this policy
- All adults and children at the club should have an understanding of what bullying is.
- All officials, coaching and non-coaching staff should know what the club policy is on bullying, and follow it when bullying is reported.
- All children and parents should know what the club policy is on bullying, and what they should do if bullying arises.
- As a club, we take bullying seriously. Children and parents should be assured they will be supported when bullying is reported.
- Bullying will not be tolerated.
Putting things in place
Signs and symptoms
A child may indicate, by signs or behaviour, that he or she is being bullied. Adults should be aware of signs and investigate if a child:
- Says they are being bullied
- Changes their usual routine
- Is unwilling to go to the club
- Becomes withdrawn anxious, or lacking in confidence
- Comes home with clothes torn or belongings damaged
- Has possessions which are damaged or go missing
- Asks for money or starts stealing money (to pay the bully)
- Has unexplained cuts or bruises
- Is frightened to say what’s wrong
- Gives improbable excuses for any of the above
In more extreme cases, the child:
- Starts stammering
- Cries themselves to sleep at night or has nightmares
- Becomes aggressive, disruptive or unreasonable
- Is bullying other children or siblings
- Stops eating
- Attempts or threatens suicide or runs away
These signs and behaviours could indicate other problems, but bullying is a possibility and should be investigated.
- Report bullying incidents to the Club Welfare Officer
- In cases of serious bullying, the incidents will be reported to the ECB Safeguarding Team for advice via the County Welfare Officer
- Parents should be informed and invited to a meeting to discuss the problem
- If necessary, and appropriate, police will be consulted
- The bullying behaviour or threats of bullying must be investigated and the bullying stopped quickly
- An attempt will be made to help the bully (bullies) change their behaviour
In cases of adults reported to be bullying cricketers under 18, the ECB must always be informed and will advise on action to be taken.
We will use ‘Kidscape’ recommended methods to help children prevent bullying. These may include:
- Developing a children’s code of conduct (see guidance in ‘Safe hands’)
- Agreeing behaviour contracts
- Having discussions about bullying and why it matters
*with thanks to Kidscape for their expert advice and templates