Ride Technics is committed to having mountain bike coaching programs that are safe for all children and will not tolerate any kind of abuse or harm.
Ride Technics prioritises the active participation of children, young people and their families in our programs. The focus is on creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for all ages, genders, abilities and cultural backgrounds.
Ride Technics builds safety and risk management planning into all its programs; the prevention and reporting of abuse is supported and encouraged. All staff, volunteers and contractors are responsible for promoting the safety, wellbeing and empowerment of children. Ride Technics recognises that discrimination can harm children and we treat all children with dignity and respect.
This Code of Conduct sets expectations for how staff, volunteers and contractors at Ride Technics should behave around children. This helps children participate safely in our programs and have fun.
Mountain biking is a physical activity and can at times involve physical risk and be competitive, so having behavioural standards to manage the risks to children is important. This Code of Conduct identifies positive child safe behaviours that we ask staff, volunteers and contractors to demonstrate. It also identifies behaviours that we consider unacceptable and not permitted.
Not following standards of acceptable and unacceptable behaviour is a breach of this Code of Conduct and may result in disciplinary action. Some behaviours on their own may not be a serious breach of the Code of Conduct but together may indicate a concerning pattern of behaviour that poses a risk to the safety of children. Our disciplinary policy provides further information on processes that will be followed if breaches are identified.
All Ride Technics Staff, volunteers and contractors must always follow these standards of behaviour, including when on site at one of our coaching locations, attending a competition or camp, and when engaging with Ride Technics students and their families at any time:
- Take all reasonable steps to protect children from abuse
- Take disclosures of harm or abuse made by a child seriously
- Raise concerns with management if risks to child safety are identified.
- Report and act on any concerns or observed breaches of this Code of Conduct
- Participate in all compulsory training and professional development including training on child safety and wellbeing
- Treat all children and young people with respect, regardless of race, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, language, religion, political or other opinion, nationality, cultural background, financial situation, disability or other characteristics
- Consider the different needs of all children at Ride Technics, support them to participate fully in programs and help them and their families feel included in programs
- Make Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island children and families feel included and welcome at Ride Technics and support Aboriginal children to express their culture and enjoy their cultural rights
- Never be racist towards anyone at Ride Technics and report any instances of racism I become aware of it
- Help Ride Technics be a place where people of all cultures feel safe and included
- Listen to children and respond to them if they feel unsafe
- Value children and young people’s ideas and opinions and ask for feedback throughout and at the end of sessions, including explaining to them that they can give feedback to pass onto Ride Technics via their parents/carers
- Promote friendships and encourage children and young people to support their peers
- Involve children and young people in decisions about the activities they participate in at Ride Technics and welcome the participation of parents and carers in these decisions
- Ask and seek consent from all children regardless of whether their parent/carer has provided consent, this includes touching a child’s equipment e.g. helmet, bicycle
- Provide optimal opportunities for privacy when working in the outdoor environment if the child needs to toilet as well as making sure that it is safe for them to do so in the outdoor setting
- Report any conflicts of interest I have (such as an outside relationship with a child) that may affect my ability to perform my role
- Respect the privacy of children and their families, including keeping all personal information confidential unless required by law to share it
- Inform parents and carers if there are situations that need to be safely managed but are outside the boundaries of this Code of Conduct (such as driving a child to a program location or competition or undertaking one-on-one training sessions)
- Ensure breaches of this Code are reported to our Child Safety Person immediately
- Comply with all relevant Australian and State legislation and our child safe policies and procedures
- Uphold the rights of the child and always prioritise their needs.
I WILL NOT:
- Condone or participate in illegal, unsafe, abusive or harmful behaviour towards children – this includes physical violence, sexual abuse, emotional or psychological abuse, grooming, neglect or sexual misconduct
- Ignore or disregard any concerns, suspicions or disclosures of child abuse or harm
- Exaggerate or trivialise child abuse issues
- Use hurtful or offensive behaviour or language with children, this includes words that are often considered non-offensive such as “bullshit, shit, idiot, stupid, dammit”
- Fail to report information to police if I know a child has been abused
- Persistently criticise and/or denigrate a child
- Deliberately prevent a child from forming friendships
- Verbally assault a child or create a climate of fear
- Ride bicycles in an unsafe manner or promote / encourage children to ride their bicycles on terrain that is above their ability or involves skills that have not yet been acquired by students
- Offer children and young people alcohol, cigarettes or other drugs
- Show children pornographic images
- Share details of sexual experiences with a child
- Use sexual language or gestures in the presence of children
- Touch children in a way that is unnecessary or unsuitable and falls outside what is reasonable to teach mountain bike skills instruction or otherwise engage in the activities of Ride Technics e.g. adjusting a child’s helmet, providing first aid, showing how they squeeze their brake levers with their hands and fingers
- Initiate unnecessary physical contact with children or do things of a personal nature that children can do for themselves such as changing clothes
- Change into uniform in front of a child e.g. from day wear into cycling clothing
- Develop ‘special’ relationships with specific children or show favouritism through the provision of gifts or unnecessary or unsuitable attention
- Have unauthorised contact with children and young people online, on social media or by phone
- Take photographs, screenshots or share images of children involved in activities that are not authorised by Ride Technics
- Be alone with a child when there is no professional reason for doing so and where it has not been consented to by parent/carer as part of the coaching/instructor role
- Engage in mentoring and/or tutoring a child out of work hours (without managerial approval for this kind of secondary employment)
- Enter changing facilities without first knocking and only when there is an essential reason to do so
If I suspect that this Code of Conduct has been breached by another person in the organisation:
- Act to prioritise the best interests of the child or children
- Promptly take actions to ensure the child or children are safe
- As soon as possible report the incident or concerns using the Ride Technics complaints process
- Maintain the privacy of those involved, following Ride Technics’ record keeping, privacy and information sharing guidelines.
Complaints about a breach of this Code of Conduct must be reported by contacting us.
Some breaches of this Code of Conduct may need to be reported to the State Police, or to the Commission for Children and Young People. Our Complaint Handling Policy provides more information about our reporting obligations to external authorities as well as describing protections and confidentiality provisions for anyone making a report. The policy is provided in the employee handbook.
Staff and volunteers who breach our Code of Conduct may also be subject to disciplinary action. This can include increased supervision, appointment to an alternative role, suspension or termination from the organisation. Detailed descriptions of breaches are found in our Child Safety and Wellbeing Policy. The information is provided in the employee handbook.
If any person in a position of authority within our organisation becomes aware of a substantial risk that a child may become the victim of a sexual offence committed by an adult associated with the organisation (for example, an employee, contractor or volunteer), and they have the power or responsibility to reduce or remove the risk, then they must take all reasonable steps to do so. A person in authority who negligently fails to take appropriate action to address the risk may be charged with the criminal offence of ‘failing to protect’ and may face a term of imprisonment.
If an adult reasonably believes a sexual offence has been committed by an adult against a child under the age of 16, they must report it to State Police by calling 000 or going to their local police station. Failure to disclose the information may be a criminal offence.
I have read this Code of Conduct and agree to abide by its terms.
Date: Last reviewed: 28th August 2023
Next review date: 28th August 2024
Responding to Child Abuse Allegations
You must ACT.
As you work with children you play a crucial role in protecting Children. You must follow the four actions set out below when responding to any Child Abuse allegations.
Action 1 – Responding
If a Child is at risk of immediate harm, you must ensure their safety by:
Calling 000 for medical and/or police assistance to respond to urgent health or safety concerns
Administering first aid, if required
Separating at-risk Child and others involved
Identifying an appropriate contact person for any on-going liaison with the Police.
If there is no immediate harm, go to Action 2 below.
Action 2 – Reporting
If you suspect, on reasonable grounds that a Child was, is, or is at risk of being abused and/or neglected, you must:
report it to the police and/or child protection agency. Child Protection after hours phone number is 131 278 (5pm – 9pm Mon to Fri; 24 hrs weekend & public holidays)
Report it internally to your designated Child Safety Person:
Action 3 – Contact
You must contact the police and/or the relevant child protection agency to determine the information that may be shared with parents/guardians, and who should lead this contact (i.e., police, child protection department or Child Safety Person).
This could include advice:
Not to contact the parents or guardians in circumstances where they are alleged to have engaged in the abuse.
To contact the parents/guardians and provide agreed information as soon as possible.
Action 4 – Support
Support should be provided to any Child that has experienced abuse.
It is important that the person providing support to the Child does not attempt to provide support which is outside of the scope of their role.
Support should include maintaining a calm open manner when listening to any allegations and disclosures, while avoiding seeking detailed information or asking leading questions.
This information needs to be well documented and shared with designated contact.
Further support for the Child, relevant adults and others involved may be required, including a referral to wellbeing or healthcare professionals and or the development of a safety plan.