War a’n peryl na worth-peryl
(Risk Aware, Not Risk Averse)
Dear Chair and Club Secretary
As the season is developing momentum, it has become apparent that there are some significant lapses in
medical provision at clubs that have, in turn, become Safeguarding issues.
Both RugbySafe and Safeguarding Leads are fully aware of the burden that is placed on club volunteers and do not wish to add to their workload, but the provisions of Reg 9 and 21 with their associated processes exist to protect the interest of players, officials and club management alike.
Last season a pragmatic approach to enforcing the regulations was taken as the priority was to restart rugby.
However, as has been communicated to club RugbySafe and Safeguarding leads, First Aid Risk Assessments (RAs), Safeguarding Audits, Medical Emergency Action Plans (MEAPs) and the correct provision of trained First Aiders with associated support provisions, are something that can no longer be postponed or ignored.
The RFU have clearly publicised their stance and requirements. We as a CB have an obligation to ensure that they are in place which is why CRFU has, for the past few seasons, been providing heavily subsidised and well publicised rugby oriented first aid courses to clubs.
Unfortunately, recent incidents demonstrate that club Safeguarding and RugbySafe processes are either not in place or not being adhered to. Therefore, as a CB, we have no option but to instigate a series of no-notice audits of both areas. In doing so, the auditing team will as a minimum, in addition to observing on field activities and provision, require to see the following documents and evidence to show that:
First Aid Risk Assessment (RA) is accessible, in place and lodged with RFU/Howdens
Medical Emergency Action Plans in place and accessible for the home venues used by club teams
GMS documentation and lists of qualified first aiders used by a club are visible and up to date
Medical equipment and associated facilities are fit for purpose and reflect the contents of RA & MEAP
and RFU Standards
First Aiders having contact with U18 are clearly identifiable, DBS checked and in date
Safeguarding personnel are clearly identifiable and qualified
Coaches, Team Managers and First Aiders are in date for Headcase on line training
Pitchside protections and safety related process reflect good practice, the contents of the RA and vice
It is stressed that the intent throughout is to actively encourage and assist clubs to ensure that they have all appropriate structures and documents in place, in order to be confident in their ability to withstand
investigative scrutiny in the event of an incident or accident. In doing so they will be safe in the knowledge that the regulations and requirements of the sports governing body are met and consistently adhered to.
The auditors will conduct themselves in a way that does not disrupt the activities underway and will make
themselves known to club personnel on the day. On completion, a report will be provided to the club detailing any non compliances, guidance and timelines for rectification and exemplars of good practice.
Should your Club RugbySafe Lead or Safeguarding Officer have any questions as to what is required or
interpretations of the requirement for specific circumstances, CRFU RugbySafe and Safeguarding are on hand and willing to provide assistance.
Chairman CRFU 4 October 2022