Basketball Nova Scotia is part of the sporting community in our province that is committed to seeking better ways to keep our youth safe. Protecting participants from all forms of abuse and neglect, whether emotional, physical or sexual, is an important element of safety. Basketball Nova Scotia considers any form of abuse or neglect to be unacceptable and will do all it can to prevent this intolerable social problem. To this end, Basketball Nova Scotia will promote awareness of all forms of abuse and neglect by providing educational materials and programs for members, parents, volunteers and staff members.
It is the policy of Basketball Nova Scotia that there shall be no abuse and neglect, whether physical, emotional or sexual of any participant in any of its programs. Basketball Nova Scotia expects every parent, volunteer and staff member to take all reasonable steps to safeguard the welfare of our members and protect them from any form of maltreatment.
1. DEFINITIONS OF ABUSE
Child abuse is any form of physical, emotional and/or sexual mistreatment or lack of care, which causes
physical injury or emotional damage to a child. A common characteristic of all forms of abuse against
children and youth is an abuse of power or authority and/or breach of trust. In Nova Scotia, a child is considered to be any person under 16 years of age according to provincial legislation. However, for the purposes of this policy, Basketball Nova Scotia considers a child to be anyone under 19 years of age.
2. EMOTIONAL ABUSE
Emotional abuse is a chronic attack on a child’s self-esteem; it is psychologically destructive behaviour by a person in a position of power, authority or trust. It can take the form of name-calling, threatening,
ridiculing, berating, intimidating, isolating, hazing or ignoring the child’s needs.
3. PHYSICAL ABUSE
Physical abuse is when a person in a position of power or trust purposefully injures or threatens to injure a child or youth. This may take the form of slapping, hitting, shaking, kicking, pulling hair or ears,
throwing, shoving, grabbing, hazing or excessive exercise as a form of punishment.
Neglect is chronic inattention to the basic necessities of life such as clothing, shelter, nutritious diets,
education, good hygiene, supervision, medical and dental care, adequate rest, safe environment, moral
guidance and discipline, exercise and fresh air. This may occur in basketball when injuries are not
adequately treated or players are made to play with injuries, equipment is inadequate or unsafe, no-one
intervenes when team members are persistently harassing another player, or road trips are not properly
5. SEXUAL ABUSE
Sexual abuse is when a young person is used by an older child, adolescent or adult for his or her own
sexual stimulation or gratification. There are two categories:
|touched or fondled in sexual areas||obscene remarks on phone/computer or in notes|
|forced to touch another person’s sexual areas||voyeurism|
|kissed or held in a sexual manner||forced to watch sexual acts|
|forced to perform oral sex||shown pornography|
|vaginal or anal intercourse||sexually intrusive questions and comments|
|vaginal or anal penetration with an object or finger||forced to pose for sexual photographs or videos|
|sexually oriented hazing||forced to self-masturbate or forced to watch others masturbate|
6. DUTY TO REPORT
Abuse and neglect are community problems requiring urgent attention. Basketball Nova Scotia is committed to help reduce and prevent the abuse and neglect of participants. Basketball Nova Scotia realizes that persons working closely with children and youth have a special awareness of abusive situations. Therefore, these people have a reporting responsibility to ensure the safety of children, by knowing their provincial protection acts and following through as required. Nova Scotia has mandatory reporting laws regarding the abuse and neglect of children and youth. Consequently, it is the policy of Basketball Nova Scotia that any Basketball Nova Scotia member (part-time and full-time staff, volunteer, participant, team official, on court official) or Basketball Nova Scotia partner (parent, guardian) who, has reasonable grounds to suspect that a participant is or may be suffering or may have suffered from emotional, physical abuse and neglect and/or sexual abuse shall immediately report the suspicion and the information on which it is based to the local child protection agency and/or the local police detachment.
Those involved with Basketball Nova Scotia in providing basketball opportunities for participants understand and agree that abuse or neglect, as defined above, may be the subject of a criminal investigation and/or disciplinary procedures. Failure to report an offence and thereby, failure to provide safety for participants may render the adult who keeps silent legally liable for conviction under the provincial child protection acts.
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