Aim of this Procedure
This procedure sets out how internal concerns raised by a member of the club about a club official, or a member fulfilling the role of a ‘position of trust’ will be dealt with by the club.
Reporting matters of wrongdoing
- Any member approaching the Club Committee, in good faith, with information regarding matters of wrongdoing, such as fraud, misappropriation, bad practice in child protection or water safety, discrimination or breach of the club’s Codes of Conduct, by club officials or those who hold a ‘position of trust’ within the club, shall have the matter dealt with in a positive manner.
- If any member discovers any wrongdoing, including bad practice or abuse, they should report it in the first instance to either the Chairman or Secretary, or another member of the club Committee if appropriate. These Club Officers are responsible for making preliminary enquiries, and if appropriate investigating the matter and taking any remedial action to rectify the situation in accordance with the club’s Complaints and Disciplinary Procedures. The Chairman or Secretary may involve other club officers such as the Club Welfare Officer (CWO), Safety Adviser or Junior Coordinator to assist in taking appropriate action.
- Any investigation shall not, at any stage, be carried out by any person against whom allegations are made. The investigation shall be done promptly, although more complex matters may require a longer and more thorough investigation. The Chairman or Secretary shall advise the complainant reporting the concern of the outcome of any enquiry and any remedial action taken.
- In some instances, particularly those involving child safety, the CWO may determine, following consultation with British Rowing’s Lead Safeguarding Officer, that it is necessary to refer the matter to an external authority, for example the Police. If this is the case, both the complainant and the person against whom the complaint has been made shall be notified of this, where appropriate.
- Where possible confidentiality shall be maintained, although it must be stressed that in serious cases of fraud and in cases of child protection, it shall be not always be possible to maintain strict confidentiality if the concerns reach the investigation stage. Members shall refer to the club’s Data Protection Procedure.
- Individuals are encouraged to put their name to any disclosure. Allegations raised anonymously may be investigated depending on the seriousness of the issues raised, the credibility of the concern, and the likelihood of confirming the allegation from attributable sources.
- Any member approaching the club Committee with genuine concerns shall not be disadvantaged or discriminated against in any way because of the disclosure.
- Should it be found that the allegations have been raised with malicious intent, the club Committee shall take a serious view and act accordingly as part of a formal complaint process, which may include taking disciplinary action.