Position of trust is a legal term that refers to a position of authority over another person or within an organization. These guidelines are intended to guard against situations where a person takes advantage of their position of authority with inappropriate behaviour.
Any sexual activity between adults involved in Living Sport in whatever specific role (employment, deployment or position of trust or authority) and young people involved in Living Sport activities (whether during or after) is inappropriate and will lead to disciplinary action.
Further information about ‘Abuse of Trust’ is provided by the NSPCC here.
We have some other useful guidance on this matter and whilst clearly directly at teachers is useful in explaining the legal framework, but more importantly providing good practice guidance which is appropriate sports coaches and other involved in sport in positions of trust e.g. Team Captain, specifically:
- All staff should clearly understand the need to maintain appropriate boundaries in their dealings with young people. Intimate or sexual relationships between staff and pupils will be regarded as a grave breach of trust. Any sexual activity between a member of staff and a pupil under 18 years of age may be a criminal offence.
- All staff should ensure that their relationships with pupils are appropriate to the age and gender of the pupils, and take care that their language or conduct does not give rise to comment or speculation. Attitudes, demeanour and language all require care and thought, particularly when members of staff are dealing with adolescent boys and girls.
- From time to time staff may encounter young people who display attention-seeking behaviour, or profess to be attracted to them. Staff should aim to deal with those situations sensitively and appropriately, but ensure that their behaviour cannot be misinterpreted. In these circumstances, the member of staff should also ensure that a senior colleague is aware of the situation