For the 2015 affiliation year onwards it will be mandatory for Clubs in England and Wales who have under 18s or vulnerable adults as members or users of their services to appoint a Club Welfare Officer.
Club Welfare Officers (CWO) have always been mandatory for Go-Ride clubs and BC have now extended this to all clubs who have U18s or vulnerable adults as club members or participants in club activities. In the Working Together 2013 document, it is specified that if you are putting on activities for children you need to have a designated person for safeguarding/child protection issues. Whilst British Cycling have a Safeguarding department in place we are too far removed to be accessible for all club member issues.
Primarily a CWO will raise welfare issues at club meetings and activities as well as being a point of contact for anyone with any welfare concerns. This may range from serious issues such as abuse or neglect, to more sport specific aspects such as a race or activity being too demanding for young participants.
WW’s CWOs have had a Disclosure and Barring Service check (DBS, this replaces the old CRB system). British Cycling pays for and administers this check. CWO’s also have to complete the Educare “Child Protection in Sport and Active Leisure” online learning course as a minimum. Individuals who hold professional roles such as teacher or doctor may already have completed adequate safeguarding training.