LFC Safeguarding Guide

Liverpool FC Safeguarding Guide for Children

The Guide below is for anyone who is under 18, and their friends, family and guardians to learn more about:

  • What Liverpool FC does to keep children safe and well when they are participating in an LFC Activity or on a matchday
  • What to do if you are worried about something
  • What we do at Liverpool Football Club if we are worried about your safety or wellbeing 

What is Safeguarding?

Safeguarding is putting the safety and wellbeing of anyone under the age of 18 at the centre of what we do. We aim to create an environment where they feel encouraged; listened to; feel able to reach their potential, and to make a positive contribution to society.

You have the right to be safe wherever you are; at home, with friends, at school, out and about or at football. We want to ensure all our young players are safe and happy.

Everyone at Liverpool FC has responsibility to make sure that the wellbeing of children is put first.

Creating the Liverpool FC environment for Safeguarding

It is important that everyone at Liverpool FC feels safe and happy. We make sure that:

  • We have an environment where you can feel comfortable to tell someone in authority if something worries you.
  • We take your concerns seriously
  • Our staff have special training and guidelines on the best ways to work with children.

What is abuse?

Abuse is anything another person does that causes harm. Abuse can happen in families, between friends or anywhere. Peer on Peer abuse is the most common sort of abuse. Below are some different types of abuse you may experience:

Physical Abuse including:

  • Hitting, smacking, and slapping
  • Burning or scalding
  • Throwing things or spitting at you
  • Shaking or suffocating you

Sexual Abuse including:

  • Touching
  • Saying things
  • Making you watch, or
  • Making you take part in things that make you uncomfortable
  • Up-skirting, this is a criminal offence

Emotional Abuse including:

  • Someone ignoring you
  • Putting you down
  • Putting you in a difficult situation
  • Humiliating you
  • Calling you names
  • Controlling you.
  • Being aggressive towards you, your friends or family
  • Threatening or intimidating you.

Bullying:

Bullying is a repeated action that make you feel bad. It can be online or face to face and includes:

  • Name calling
  • Pushing
  • Threatening you.

Neglect

Neglect is when people stop you having life’s essentials including:

  • Food
  • Medicine
  • Somewhere to live
  • Clean clothes.
  • It also means not protecting you from harm

Discriminatory Abuse:

When you feel harassed or picked on because of who you are. This includes comments or jokes which are:

  • Racist
  • Sexist
  • Homophobic
  • Ageist
  • Based on your disability.

Grooming

Grooming is defined as developing the trust of an individual and/or their family for the purposes of sexual abuse, sexual exploitation or trafficking.

Coercive Control and Modern Slavery

Coercive Control is a pattern of controlling behaviour incidents that occur over time for one individual to exert power, control or coercion over another, e.g. restricting movements, access to money, isolating victim from family and friends.

Modern Slavery

Modern Slavery encompasses slavery, human trafficking, forced labour and domestic servitude.

Abuse can also take other forms such as child sexual or criminal exploitation, genital mutilation (FGM), hazing (initiation activities).

Abuse is not acceptable.

Being a victim of abuse is not your fault, don’t keep it to yourself.

We will help.

Preventing Radicalisation and Extremism

Liverpool FC will not tolerate activity of any sort which creates an environment for the radicalisation of individuals regardless of which extremist ideology it is based upon.

Radicalisation is “the process through which an individual changes from passiveness or activism to become more revolutionary, militant or extremist, especially where there is intent towards, or support for, violence.”

We aim to protect vulnerable individuals from being radicalised or exposed to extremism, by identifying who they are and providing them with support.

Extremism is defined as “the holding of extreme political or religious views”.

The strategy covers all forms of terrorism, including far right extremism and some aspects of non-violent extremism. It is important to remember that Islamist ideology should not be confused with traditional religious practice. It is an ideology which is based on a distorted interpretation of Islam, which betrays Islam’s peaceful principles.

All Liverpool FC staff have been trained to spot radicalisation and extremism and how to report any concerns that they might have if someone is showing extremist views or might have been radicalised.

What Liverpool FC does to protect children

Recruitment and Training

All staff who work with anyone under 18 go through a rigorous recruitment and induction process. This includes background checks before they start working. Interviewing them to ensure their values match the Liverpool FC values. Getting references to ensure they can do their job well. All Liverpool FC staff have specialist training, so they know what to look for, and what to do to safeguard all children.

Safety at Matches

We want your experience of watching Liverpool FC to be first class. We cannot guarantee the result on the pitch, but we will ensure that you are safe. To do this we ensure everyone follows safety procedures; All staff are trained; We employ Safeguarding Stewards who are specialists, who are deployed at different parts of the stadium. They have purple armbands that say ‘safeguarding steward’; Anyone under 16 must be accompanied to matches by a responsible adult.

The Academy and Liverpool FC Women

All young players who are selected to play for Liverpool FC will be well looked after. We employ specialist staff who look after the young players education, welfare, health and mental health. We have an Education, Welfare and Player Care programme that ensures the players and their parents are made aware of some of the dangers connected to safeguarding, including internet safety.

Support is offered to the players to ensure that educational progress is good. We expect all our players to reach their educational potential and to complete a full suite of GCSEs, then post 16 qualifications.

Some players stay with host families. This can be for many reasons, mainly if the player lives a long way from the training ground. Living nearby can make the players lives easier. Ensuring the host family matches the needs of the player is very important. All our host families must complete a detailed application and vetting process. This includes background checks, a detailed application process, personal visits to the house, and interviews. We listen to the player before and during their placement with a host family.

If you live with a host family, you will have a regular catch up session with Liverpool FC staff to make sure it is working well. You can tell us about any issues, thoughts or worries you might have. Your happiness with the host family is the most important thing.

We are aware that for many young players combining being an elite footballer, growing up and the pressures from home, family and school can sometimes be overwhelming. We will provide help for your mental health if you tell us about it.

All players will feel rejected at some point in their football career, regardless of how good a player they are. Liverpool FC will support you through any rejection process and beyond. Once a Liverpool FC player, always a Liverpool FC player. You can turn to us for help whenever you need it.

Liverpool FC in the Community

Through parts of the club like LFC Foundation, Red Neighbours and Soccer Schools you might take part in a Liverpool FC activity. All our staff who work in the community are vetted, chosen and trained to be able you to have an enjoyable and safe time.

Information held about me

If you have any ongoing contact with Liverpool FC it is likely we will take some personal details, for example your name, address, date of birth, details of your parents or guardian.

This is so we know who you are and can contact you again. We might also ask to take your picture. This will be for good reason, like to celebrate an event or an achievement. We might take pictures to help you develop your football technique. Either way we will ask your parent / carer’s permission to do this.

Normally if you give permission, we apply it to all situations where photographs might be taken. You can always opt out.

At the outset, or mid-way through you, or your parent / carer can opt out, and withdraw your permission.

We store all information and images in line with data protection law. This means all information is;

  • Collected with your consent and your parents/ carers consent
  • Stored safely
  • Deleted within the correct timescales.

Liverpool FC Safeguarding Team

Safeguarding Board

Andy Hughes Cheif Operating Officer
Jon Bamber General Counsel
Ray Said Independent Safeguarding Expert
Gavin Laws Chair of Trustees LFC Foundation 
John Pout Director, Safeguarding

 

Safeguarding Leaders

Academy Andrew Powlesland
LFC Foundation Karl Carney
Soccer Schools Andrew Nicholas
Stadium Operations Lorna Duckworth
Liverpool FC Women Julie Grundy and Adam Greaves-Smith
All other parts of the club John Pout

 

Asking for Help

How to report something you are worried about

Liverpool FC is somewhere where you can have a good time. It is also somewhere you can turn to to share your worries. These could be worries at home, with friends, at school or at LFC.

We will listen

It can be difficult to share things. You might worry that something is wrong, you might not be able to explain things well. This does not matter; Liverpool FC staff will listen and give you the time to talk, listen, act on what you say and to make sure you're safe.

It can be difficult to ask for help, here’s what you can do

You don’t have to share everything all at once. Tell them what worries you, telling someone is the most important thing. Choose an adult you trust. Someone who makes you feel safe and you know will listen.

It could be;

  • A coach
  • A member of the Liverpool FC Safeguarding Team
  • A teacher
  • A family member
  • A family friend

Telling someone your worries might make you nervous. Don’t worry that is normal, but telling someone about things that worry you will make you feel better once you have spoken out. It might be hard to describe things, but we will listen and understand. You might prefer to write things down, that’s fine too.

Talk to us if you have any worries, you can report a problem in detail to LFC here this will go straight to the Director, Safeguarding.