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IRFU Safeguarding Statement

The IRFU is committed to the enjoyment of rugby by young people. It values and encourages the participation of parents, coaches and volunteers in rugby for participants under 18-years of age. The policy of the IRFU with respect to safeguarding children is to respect the dignity and rights of Age Grade Players.

The IRFU will strive throughout its organisation and spheres of influence to promote, create and maintain safe environments for Age Grade Players. It will endeavour to maintain the key values of Respect, Inclusivity, Integrity, Excellence and Fun. A detailed safeguarding policy can be found here, http://www.irishrugby.ie/safeguarding and the Sports Councils' Code of Ethics should be used where the IRFU has not published specific guidelines.

Following a risk assessment for any potential harm to a child while involved in rugby we have identified areas of risk and the list of procedures to be put in place to manage these risks.

Our child safeguarding statement has been developed in lines with requirements under the Children First Act 2015 and in Northern Ireland, the Club Framework for Safeguarding Standards. In addition to the procedures listed in our risk assessment, the following procedures are in place as part of the IRFU Safeguarding Policy and support our intention to safeguard children:


• Procedure for the safe recruitment and selection of workers and volunteers to work with children, http://www.irishrugby.ie/playingthegame/development/safeguarding/recruitment.php


• Procedure for provision of and access to child safeguarding training and information, including the identification of the occurrence of harm, http://www.irishrugby.ie/playingthegame/development/safeguarding/training.php


• Procedure for the reporting of child protection and welfare concerns to Tusla (Ireland) and Gateway (Northern Ireland) through the National Safeguarding Officer and Mandated Person within IRFU: Anne Marie Hughes (086 0485977 / annemarie.hughes@irfu.ie / http://www.irishrugby.ie/playingthegame/development/safeguarding/concerns.php


• Procedure for the management of allegation of abuse or misconduct against workers/volunteers of a child availing of our service
All procedures listed are available on the IRFU website, http://www.irishrugby.ie/safeguarding . The IRFU expects those involved within club age-grade rugby to adopt and supervise the implementation of these safeguarding principles and standards.


The IRFU recognises that implementation is an ongoing process. It is committed to the implementation of this Child Safeguarding Statement and accompanying safeguarding policy to keep children involved in rugby safe from harm.


This Child Safeguarding Statement will be reviewed in March 2019, or as soon as practicable after there has been a material change in any matter to which the statement refers.


Des Kavanagh - Chair of Spirit of Rugby

Peter O'Brien - Chair of Safeguarding Working Group

For queries please contact Anne Marie Hughes, annemarie.hughes@irfu.ie / 086-0485977

IRFU Safeguarding Policy 2015

Download the policy - click here

All clubs and organisations with Age-Grade Players should ensure that their coaches and volunteers are familiar with the key messages and content of the policy

The key messages of the document are:

• Create a safe and fun environment for Age-Grade Players

• Set quality safeguarding standards in clubs

• Adhere to current best practice and legislation

• Keeps IRFU, its Branches and clubs in line with ISC/SNI standards

Further information for clubs and Club Welfare Officers is available in the 'Best Practice' section.

Club Action Plan

Frequently Asked Questions

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16 December 2018
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