OUWFC Complaints & Safeguarding Procedures


a) All formal complaints should be submitted by letter or email with full details, directly to the Chair and Secretary within seven days of the occurrence/incident.
b) The MC (Management Committee) will meet to hear complaints either at the next arranged meeting or earlier depending on the seriousness of the allegation or complaint.
c) The MC if required will appoint a Disciplinary Panel of three MC members. If the Disciplinary Panel feels the complaint/allegation is serious enough they may involve the Oxfordshire FA and the OUFC
d) The MC may ask for witness statements and the outcome of the Disciplinary hearing will be notified confidentially by letter or email to the individuals agreed By the Disciplinary Panel
e) There will be a right to appeal to the Disciplinary Panel following disciplinary action being announced. The MC should consider the appeal within seven days of the Disciplinary Panel receiving the appeal.
f) The Appeals Panel will be Chaired by the President must not include members of the Disciplinary Panel The decision of the Appeals Panel will be final and binding on all parties.


Welfare Officer: Don Ramage 
Contact number: 07919 887776
Email: ouwfcwelfare@gmail.com

This policy was agreed by the MC (Management Committee) on 25-01-2022 and to be reviewed every twelve months from the said date. A copy of this policy is held on the Club website www.ouwalkingfc.co.uk

Oxford United Walking Football Club (OUWFC) organise sessions for Men Over fifty, Women over eighteen and for adults and children with Down's Syndrome.

Defining child abuse or abuse against an adult is a difficult and complex issue. A person may abuse by inflicting harm or failing to prevent harm. Children and adults in need of protection may be abused within a family, an institution or a community setting. Very often the abuser is known or in a trusted relationship with the child or adult. As a Football Club we recognise the need to provide a safe and caring environment for children, young people and adults. OUWFC are committed to on-going safeguarding awareness and developing a culture of awareness of safeguarding issues to help protect everyone.

Working with children, young people and adults with care and support needs we wish to operate and promote good working practice. This will enable members to run activities safely, develop good relationships and minimise the risk of false or unfounded accusation.

Volunteers Responsibility

The Welfare Officer will ensure all volunteers are supported in accordance with the following Guidance on safe recruitment insuring that:
• Safeguarding has been discussed with them
• A disclosure and barring check (DBS check) has been completed where necessary
• The Volunteer is given a copy of the OUWFC Safeguarding policy and knows how to report concerns.

Responding to allegations or suspicion of abuse

Under no circumstances should a volunteer carry out their own investigation into an allegation or suspicion of abuse. Follow procedures as below. The person in receipt of the allegations of abuse should report concerns as soon as possible to the Welfare Officer.

The Welfare Officer (contact details at the beginning of this policy) is nominated by the MC (Management Committee) to act on their behalf in dealing with the allegation or suspicion of neglect or abuse, including referring the matter on to the statutory authorities.

In the absence of the Welfare Officer or, if the suspicions in any way involve the Welfare Officer, then the report should be made to the Parent safeguarding contact below.

Name: Amanda Foulds (Parent Safeguarding Contact)
Tel: 07769 707855
Email: amanda@dsoxford.org.uk

If the suspicions implicate both the Welfare Officer and the Parent Safeguarding Contact, then the report should be made in the first instance to Social Services and the police.

The role of the Welfare Officer is to clarify the precise details of the allegation or suspicion and pass this information on to statutory agencies who have the legal duty to investigate It.

• The Welfare Officer should then contact Social Services in the area the child or adult lives.
• The Welfare Officer may need to inform others depending on the circumstances and/or the nature of the concern.
• The Welfare Officer may need to advise the Chair who may need to liaise with the insurance company to report a serious incident.
• Whilst allegations or suspicions of abuse will normally be reported to the Welfare Officer, the absence of the Welfare Officer or Parent Safeguarding Contact should not delay referral to Social Services or the Police.
• The MC will support the Welfare Officer in his role and accept that any information they may have in their possession will be shared in a strictly limited way on a need-to-know basis.

It is, of course, the right of any individual as a citizen to make a direct referral to the safeguarding agencies, although the MC hopes that members of the Club will use this procedure. However, if the individual with the concerns feels that the Welfare Officer or the Parent Safeguarding Contact has not responded appropriately, or where they have a disagreement with them as to the appropriateness of the referral, they are free to contact an outside agency directly.

The Management Committee of the OUWFC intends to demonstrate their commitment to effective safeguarding and the protection of all those who are vulnerable by way of this policy statement.

Safeguarding-Procedure for Oxford United Walking Football Club

Concern about a child
Allegations of physical injury, neglect or emotional abuse. If a child has a physical injury, neglect a symptom of neglect or where there are concerns about emotional abuse, the Welfare Officer/Parent Safeguarding Contact will:

• Contact Children's Social Services for advice in cases of deliberate injury if concerned about a child's safety or if a child is afraid to return home.
• Not tell the parents or carers unless advised to do so, having contacted Children's Social Services.
• Seek medical help if needed urgently, informing the doctor of any suspicions.
• For lesser concerns (e.g. poor parenting), encourage parent/carer to seek help, but not if this places the child at a risk of significant harm.
• Where the parent/carer is unwilling to seek help, offer to accompany them. In cases of real concern, if they still fail to act, contact Children's Social Services directly for advice.

Allegations of sexual abuse
In the event of allegations or suspicions of sexual abuse, the Welfare Officer/Parent Safeguarding contact will:

• Contact the Children's Social Services Department Duty Social Worker for children and families or Police Child Protection Team directly. They will NOT speak to the parent/carer or anyone else.

The following information is taken from Oxfordshire Safeguarding Children Board website: https://www.oscb.or2.uk/reportin2-concerns/

Oxfordshire Safeguarding Children Board
Call: 01865 815843
Email: oscb@oxfordshire.gov.uk

To report a new concern or any immediate concerns about a child

The Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) is the front door to Children's Social Care for all child protection and immediate safeguarding concerns. If there is an immediate safeguarding concern, for example:

• Allegations/concerns that the child has been sexually/physically abused
• Concerns that the child is suffering from severe neglect or other health risks
• Concern that a child is living in or will be returned to a situation that may place him/her at immediate risk
• The child is frightened to return home
• The child has been abandoned or parent is absent

You should call MASH immediately Tel: 0345 050 7666 (This number will take you through to Customer Services who will ask a series of questions and triage into MASH where safeguarding concerns are raised). A No Names Consultation should not be used for the above scenarios.

The Oxfordshire MASH Referral Form (MASH Enquiry on-line referral form) may be used by professionals only to refer children to social services. Or you can email a report to MASH on the secure email on: mash-childrens@oxfordshire.gcsx.gov.uk

Please see the OSCB Conflict Resolution Policy and Whistleblowing Policy for guidance on managing disagreements and raising concerns at work.

To talk about an on-going concern: If you want to speak to someone about an already open case contact the relevant Children's Social Care Team.
• Oxford City - 01865 328563
• North Oxfordshire (including Banbury, Witney and Bicester): 01865 323039
• South Oxfordshire (including Abingdon, Faringdon, Wantage, Thame, Didcot and Henley): 01865 323041
• Emergency Duty Team 0800 833 408

John Radcliffe Hospital Assessment Team: 01865 221236 (for antenatal safeguarding concerns and issues children in hospital)

If you are unsure whether to make a referral: You can contact the Locality and Community Support Service (LCSS) and request a 'No names consultation (meaJ1lne you don't have to give the child's name). You can then discuss the situation with them and they will advise you on what to do next. If a referral needs to be made, they will advise you on this.

• LCSS Central 0345 241 2705
• LCSS North (including Banbury, Witney, Bicester, Carterton and Woodstock 0345 241 2703
• LCSS South (including Abingdon, Faringdon, Wantage, Thame, Didcot and Henley): 0345 2412608

Concern for an adult

Suspicions or allegations of abuse or harm including: _physical sexual, organisational, financial, discriminatory, neglect, self-neglect, forced marriage, modem slavery, domestic abuse.

If there is a concern about any of the above the Welfare Officer will:

• Contact the Adult Social Care Team who have the responsibility under the Care Act 2014 to investigate allegations of abuse.
• If the adult is in immediate danger or has sustained a serious injury contact the Emergency Services, informing them of any suspicions.

Oxfordshire County Council have procedures for dealing with cases of vulnerable adult abuse. If the person you wish to raise a concern about is in immediate danger, then please call the emergency services on 999.

You-can report concerns of abuse using the following forms:

Adult Social Services
REPORT BY A PROFESSIONAL: https://www2.oxfordshire.gov.uk/cms/node/221040
REPORT BY A MEMBER OF THE PUBLIC: https://www2.oxfordshire.gov.uk/cms/node/221035

Thames Valley Police

Abuse is often a crime: If it is an emergency, you should call 999, otherwise, you should call the Thames Valley Police Public Enquiry Centre on 101

Allegations of abuse against a person who works with children/young people: If an accusation is made against a member/worker (whether a volunteer or paid member of staff) whilst following the procedure outlined above, the Welfare Officer, in accordance with Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) procedures will:

• Liaise with Children's Social Services in regard to the suspension of a worker
• Make a referral to a designated officer formerly called a Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) whose function is to handle all allegations against adults who work with children and young people whether in a paid or voluntary capacity.
• Make a referral to Disclosure and Barring Service for consideration of the person being placed on the barred list for working with children or adults with additional care and support needs. This decision should be informed by the LADO if they are involved.

Allegations of abuse against a person who works with adults with care and support needed, the Welfare Officer will:

• Liaise with Adult Social Services in regards the suspension of the worker
• Make a referral to the DBS fo1lowing the advice of Adult Social Services

The Care Act places the duty upon Adult Services to investigate situations of harm to adults with care and support needs. This may result in a range of options including action against the person or organisation causing the harm, increasing the support for the carers or no further action if the 'victim' chooses for no further action and they have the capacity to communicate their decision. However, this is a decision for Adult Services to decide.

Supporting those affected by abuse

The Management Committee are committed to offering pastoral care, working with statutory agencies as appropriate, and support to all those who have been affected by abuse who have contact with or are part of our OUWFC.

Working with offenders and those who may pose a risk

When someone attending the Club is known to have abused children, is under investigation, or is known to be a risk to adults with care and support needs; a trustee will be nominated to supervise the individual concerned and offer pastoral care, however, in their safeguarding commitment to the protection of children and adults with care and support needs, set boundaries for that person, which they will be expected to keep. These boundaries will be based on an appropriate risk assessment and through consultation with the appropriate parties.

This Constitution was approved and adopted on 21st June 2020 and can only be amended by a two thirds majority of those members attending the AGM.

Contact Details

Club Chairman: Gary Allen - garryallen@aol.com

Club Secretary: Ken Wroe - kenwroe8@gmail.com

Get in Touch

Please enter your name.
Please enter a message.