The Club - Policies

Discplinary

  1. Statement

Battersea Ironsides Rugby Football Club Ltd (BIRFC) have a responsibility to deal with any act of indiscipline on the field of play by players, supporters, spectators, officials or any club member who at any time uses threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour towards any other member or visitor to the Club or in any way brings the Club or the game into disrepute. This policy strongly endorses the RFU Code of Conduct and corroborates with the RFU Regulations.

2. Reporting of Disciplinary Offences (Seniors)

2.1 Player sent off (Red Card) by the referee (Society or Club)

The Captain of the team concerned MUST report the following information to the Seniors Disciplinary Officer within 24 hours:
a) Date of Incident
b) Nature of the Incident
c) Teams involved and where played
d) Score at the time
e) Player’s correct name
f) Player’s address
g) Player’s date of birth

Referees (Society or Club) must in all adult matches report all players sent off to the Disciplinary Secretary of Surrey Rugby.

The Seniors Disciplinary Officer must inform the Disciplinary Secretary of Surrey Rugby within 72 hours of the sending off and will keep a record of the offence.

2.2 Player Sin Binned (Yellow Cards) by the referee (Society or Club)

The Captain of the team (or his representative) must report the name of any player sin binned (shown a yellow card) during a game to the Seniors Disciplinary Officer, who will keep a record of the offence. This is irrespective of there being a Society or Club referee officiating.

Any player, who receives more than three yellow cards in one season may be asked to appear before the Seniors Disciplinary Committee to explain the reasons why.

2.3 Acts of Foul Play not Detected by the Referee/Match Officials

Any member/player who witnesses an act of foul play or bad behaviour by a player (of any club team), can report the incident giving name(s) and details of the incident to the Seniors Disciplinary Officer or other section officer as soon after the incident as possible.

Any incident of foul play involving a member of an opposition team that has or has not been dealt with by the match official(s) and is witnessed by a player / member can be reported the Seniors Disciplinary Officer or other section Officer without delay so consideration and action can be taken if appropriate.

Any consideration for a citing must be reported to the Seniors Disciplinary Officer or other section Officer immediately as there is a very short time scale and a detailed procedure that has to be followed for citings.

2.4 Acts of Bad Behaviour by Players, Members, Officials, Spectators, Supporters or Visitors

Any member/player who witnesses an act of bad behaviour at any time by any Club member, or visitor to the Club, of whatever age, can report the matter to the Seniors Disciplinary Officer or relevant section officer so the appropriate action can be taken.

In the interests of Child Protection, any member/player who witnesses abuse or suspects abuse of a mini or youth player, youth official or minor spectator of a Club match should also report the matter to the Club Safeguarding Officer.

3. Reporting of Disciplinary Offences (Youth 13 – 17yrs)

The Club also has a duty to deal with all Youth disciplinary matters. Youth being a player under the age of 18 years at the time of the offence, providing the player is playing in an U17 or U18 Club match. Any player who has reached their 17th birthday and is playing in adult match is classed as an adult and will therefore be dealt with under the procedure outlined in section 2.

3.1 Player sent off (Red Card) by the referee (Society or Club)

The Head Coach of the team concerned MUST report the following information to the Youth Disciplinary Officer within 24 hours:
a) Date of Incident
b) Nature of the Incident
c) Teams involved and where played
d) Score at the time
e) Player’s correct name
f) Player’s address
g) Player’s date of birth
h) Contact details of the player’s parent or guardian

Referees (Society or Club), in addition to informing the Disciplinary Secretary of Surrey Rugby, must report all players sent off to the Youth Disciplinary Officer on the Preliminary Disciplinary Form (Appendix 1).

The Youth Disciplinary Officer must inform the Disciplinary Secretary of Surrey Rugby within 72 hours of the sending off.

3.2 Player Sin Binned (Yellow Cards) by the referee (Society or Club)

The Head Coach or Manager must report the name of any player sin binned (shown a

yellow card) during a game to the Youth Disciplinary Officer, who will keep a record of the offence. This is irrespective of there being a Society or Club referee officiating.

Any player, who is given more than three yellow cards in one season may be asked to appear before the Youth Disciplinary Committee to explain the reasons why.

3.3 Acts of Foul Play not Detected by the Referee/Match Officials

See section 2.3, but referred to the Youth Disciplinary Officer and Committee

3.4 Acts of Bad Behaviour by Players, Members, Officials, Spectators, Supporters or Visitors

See Section 2.4, but referred to the Youth Disciplinary Officer and Committee

3.5 Acts of Bullying

Bullying of any kind is not acceptable in any form or at any age. Any instances will be taken seriously, responded to promptly, and procedures followed to deal with the situation. Rugby is a ‘telling’ culture and anyone who knows that bullying is happening is expected to report it to the Club Safeguarding Officer. He/she will follow the guidelines as outlined in the RFU Anti Bullying Policy. It is the responsibility of every adult working in rugby union to ensure that everyone, adults and all young people can enjoy the sport in a safe, enjoyable environment.

4. Disciplinary Procedures for Minis (U7 – U12)

If the referee decides that a player must cease to participate in a match, they must stop the match, call the individual player aside from the other players and invite the Coach onto the field. The referee must explain to the Coach and the player why they feel the player’s behaviour is unacceptable and instruct the Coach to provide a substitute player. That player is to take no further part in that Fixture or Festival. It is the responsibility of the Coach to speak to and educate the player as to why such actions were taken. If deemed necessary, the Youth Disciplinary Officer will be informed and the player may be asked to attend a disciplinary hearing and will receive a suitable sanction for the offence. In such rare occurrences, a parent or guardian must be present.

5. The Disciplinary Committees

5.1 The Club has three Disciplinary Committees, which are sub committees of the Club Committee; the Seniors Disciplinary Committee, the Youth Disciplinary Committee and the Appeals Disciplinary Committee.

5.2 The Seniors and Youth Disciplinary Committees are responsible for investigating and taking action on any sending off, or any incident of foul play or bad behaviour by a player not detected by the Match Officials and instances where a player has been sin binned on more than three occasions within one season.

5.3 The Disciplinary Committees will also investigate and take action on any instance of indiscipline or bad behaviour, which contravenes the RFU Code of Conduct by any member, official, supporter or spectator.

5.4 The Disciplinary Committees will exercise such power in a fair and open manner with the accused always having a right to attend and put his/her case after first been given reasonable notice of the hearing and in exercising its power without prejudice.

5.5 The Appeals Disciplinary Committee is responsible for hearing appeals made by either a disciplined youth or senior player. It consists of the President and two other members of the Club of good character, who were not part of the first hearing by Disciplinary Committee.

5.6 The Seniors Disciplinary Committee shall consist of the Seniors Disciplinary Officer, Seniors Chairman (who will chair the Committee), one other member from the Seniors Committee, the Honorary Secretary and the Team Captain.

5.7 The Youth Disciplinary Committee shall consist of the Youth Disciplinary Officer, Youth Chairman (who will chair the Committee), one other member from the Juniors Committee, the Juniors Secretary and the Head Coach or Manager of the player’s age group.

5.8 A Disciplinary Committee will meet within seven (7) days of the act of indiscipline, offence or incident in question. Further meetings may be held if circumstances require this.

5.9 The reported player, member, supporter or spectator MUST attend the disciplinary hearing. He/she may, if they wish, be represented by one person of his/her choice.

5.10 A youth member should be accompanied by a parent/guardian and can be represented by an adult of his choosing.

5.11 The Disciplinary Committees may also receive evidence (either verbally or in writing) from any other person(s) who witnessed the incident or was involved in it prior to the meeting.

5.12 Those present at a disciplinary hearing will be: The player, member, supporter or spectator, his/her representative, witness(es) to the incident if warranted, the Referee, if requested, and the section Disciplinary Committee.

6. Disciplinary Procedure

6.1 The Chair of the Committee will make introductions. 6.2 The report of the incident is read to the meeting.

6.3 The player, member, supporter or spectator is invited to make his/her statement.

6.4 Witness(es) to the incident make their statement(s). The RFU regulations state that a player may challenge the referee’s report ONLY if he has requested the presence of the referee at the hearing (whether the referee is able to attend, or not). The referee’s presence must be requested with enough lead time to invite him. Any written evidence must be provided in advance of the hearing.

6.5 The player, member, supporter or spectator may ask for character witness to make a statement at this time.

6.6 Members of the Disciplinary Committee may question any of those present about the incident, and/or the player, member, supporter or spectator involved.

6.7 The meeting will be adjourned while the Committee decide on what action to take. The meeting is then re convened and the results of the hearing along with any penalties are announced.

6.8 The Secretary will take minutes of the meeting and will also write to the player, member, supporter or spectator with the outcome within 5 days.

6.9 In the instance of a sending off or serious incident involving a supporter, member or spectator the Secretary will send the Disciplinary Secretary of Surrey Rugby a copy of the minutes of the meeting. The report should contain:
a. The date of the meeting
b. Names and Roles of those on the disciplinary panel
c. Others in attendance
d. Record of proceedings
e. Statement of any sanction applied

7. Sanctions

7.1 The Disciplinary Committee will have the power to decide upon one or more of the following:
a. No further punishment additional to the punishment of sending off.
b.To take no action but to leave the matter to the Surrey Rugby Disciplinary Panel.
c. That the player (or other, person if the enquiry is into incidents off the field of play) be cautioned or severely cautioned as to his/her future conduct.
d. A period of suspension from playing, or taking part in the administration of Rugby Union Football (within the Club context only), or both, be imposed on the player, member, supporter or spectator. Appendix 2 lists sanctions recommended in the RFU Regulations (19 Disciplinary Procedures). It states the various entry points based on the scale and seriousness of the player’s conduct.
e. Suspend or terminate membership of the club for such period as it thinks fit.

f. Any other penalties or suspensions as decided by the Committee.

7.2 A record of any penalty awarded against any player/supporter/spectator etc, plus the reasons how that decision was arrived at will be kept on file for 3 years. This penalty can be taken into account when deciding any future penalties at any subsequent discipline hearing relating to that member within that 3-year period.

7.3 A member/player/supporter/spectator has the right to an appeal process as outlined below.

7.4 The Youth Disciplinary Committee will follow the format as above however, the age etc of the person will be taken into account in the way the hearing is conducted.

7.5 A list of recommended sanctions for Youth players (Under 18 years of age) are outlined in Appendix 3 from the RFU Regulations 19 (Appendix 6).

7.6 Senior players will also be expected to attend a formal hearing of the Surrey Disciplinary Panel for all Red Card offences

8. Appeals Procedure

8.1 Any disciplined member will have a right to the Club’s appeals procedure following any penalty imposed.

8.2 Any appeal must be submitted to the Club Honorary Secretary (Seniors) or Juniors Secretary (Youth) in writing giving reasons for the appeal within 7 days of the disciplinary hearing. The appeal will be heard within the following 7 days.

8.3 The Appeals Disciplinary Committee may uphold the section committee’s judgment, it may increase or decrease the length of any period of suspension or it may annul the judgment.

9. Costs of Attending a County Disciplinary Hearing

9.1 Levies imposed on the Club by Surrey Rugby for any player appearing before Surrey Disciplinary Committee. Charges are found in Appendix 4

9.2 The amount of such levy shall be as determined from time to time by Surrey Rugby.

9.3 The levy MUST be paid by the individual concerned and therefore the Club will invoice the player for the amount payable.

9.4 Failure to pay the club this levy will result in the player being banned from playing any further matches or use any Club facilities until the levy is paid in full. If a player leaves consequent to not paying the levy they will not be entitled to a refund of their annual
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