Keeping You in the Game
US Youth Soccer KidSafe Program Guide
Protecting Student Athletes from Concussions Act
Consumption of Energy Drinks Linked to Alcohol Dependence
Medical Awareness
Heat Illness Among High School Athletes
MSYSA Stance on Placing Names on Jerseys
USYSA Concussion Procedure and Protocol

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Zero Tolerance Policy

 The following guidelines and procedures are established for our staff, volunteers and participants.  All members of MSYSA are expected to observe and adhere to these guidelines.  Coaches, players, managers, club team officials, and volunteers that are registered through MSYSA are expected to adhere to this policy.  In addition, spectators that are participating through the registration of their child/children with MSYSA are expected to adhere to this policy as well.

 
Zero Tolerance Policy Against Abuse

Abuse of any kind is not permitted within our organization.  MSYSA does not tolerate physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse or misconduct from our players, coaches, officials, volunteers, parents or spectators.

Physical or sexual abuse, including, but not limited to, striking, hitting, kicking, biting,  spitting, indecent or wanton gesturing, lewd remarks, indecent exposure, unwanted physical contact, any form of sexual contact or inappropriate touching, are strictly prohibited within our organization.

Emotional or verbal abuse is also prohibited.  These include, but not limited to,use of foul language or making abusive statements in regard to a person’s race, gender, religion, nationality/ethnicity, sex or age.

All coaches, officials, and volunteers are appointed through the registration process as protection advocates of this policy.  Every member is responsible for reporting any cases of questionable conduct or alleged mistreatment toward participants by any coach, official, volunteer, player, parent, sibling or spectator.

MSYSA recommends that every activity sponsored by its member organizations put a BUDDY SYSTEM in place.  Each youth participant should be assigned a buddy during sponsored activities.  No child should go anywhere - to the bathroom, locker rooms, or other location, without his or her buddy.

To further protect youth participants, as well as the coaches, volunteers, and officials, we strongly recommend that no adult person allow himself/herself to be alone with a child during sponsored activities.

  • Do not drive alone with a child participant (other than your own children) in the car.
  • Do not take a child alone to the locker room, bathrooms or any other private room.
  • If you must have a private conversation with a youth participant, do it within view of others, in the gym or on the field, instead of in a private setting.

When traveling overnight with youth participants, children should be paired up with other children of same gender and similar age group, with chaperones in separate but nearby rooms.

Children should be empowered to trust their feelings and let them know that their concerns and fears are important by listening to them.  Open communication between children and parents, or between children and other adults in the organization may help early warning signs of abuse to surface.

The MSYSA board of directors, the adjudication committee, and the risk management committee will respond quickly to any and all allegations of abuse within this organization.  This information will be communicated to the authorities for investigation and will be reviewed by the organization’s directors.  The alleged offender will be notified of such allegations promptly and may be subject to a disciplinary hearing. 

Any person accused of sexual or physical abuse may be asked to resign voluntarily or may be suspended by the board until the matter is resolved.  Regardless of criminal or civil guilt in the alleged abuse, the continued presence of the person could be detrimental to the reputation of the organization and could be harmful to the participants.  A person who is accused but later cleared of charges, may apply to be reinstated within the organization.  Reinstatement is not a right, and no guarantee is made that he or she will be reinstated to his/her former position.

Our mission is to promote good sportsmanship throughout the organization and encourage qualities of mutual respect, courtesy and tolerance in all participants, coaches, officials and volunteers, and spectators.  Children with a strong self-image may be less likely targets for abuse; and they may be less likely to abuse or bully others around them.

 Enforcing MSYSA’s Zero Tolerance Policy

The objective of the MSYSA adjudication process is to ensure that every member of MSYSA will receive a fair, impartial, objective, and timely hearing of any complaint or appeal that has standing before the committee.

 The Adjudication will:

        -Investigate any allegation of referee abuse or assault,

        -Investigate any allegation of referee misconduct,

        -Review appeals from decisions of MSYSA members and program managers,and 

            -Investigate other cases delegated to it by the MSYSA Board of Directors

The Adjudication Committee relies on USSF Bylaws and Policy and the MSYSA Zero Tolerance Policy Against Abuse as its guiding principles.Coaches, players, managers, club team officials, volunteers, and spectators that are registered through MSYSA are expected to adhere to these guiding principals. Abuse of any kind is not permitted within our organization. MSYSA does not tolerate physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse or misconduct from our players, coaches, officials, volunteers, parents or spectators.

 All coaches, officials, and volunteers are appointed through the registration process as protection advocates of this policy. Every member is responsible for reporting any cases of questionable conduct or alleged mistreatment toward participants by any coach, official, volunteer, player, parent, sibling or spectator.

For more Information  on MSYSA’s adjudication, including a list of people  who have been suspended, please go to the Adjudication Section of the web site. 

Incidents of abuse for investigation can be reported to Ray Greenberg at adjudication@msysa.org.

 
Mandatory Background Checks on All Youth Soccer Officials
Unfortunately, times have changed, lawsuits are on the rise and crime is prevalent. The safety of our players, coaches and volunteers has and will never take a backseat to vulnerability. While the affiliate club is the first level in protecting the safety of the youth players, the Maryland State Youth Soccer Association is committed to working with affiliates to help ensure the success of their programs and to ensure that any negative findings are properly disseminated to protect youth players throughout the state and region. 
As part of its overall risk management program, MSYSA intends to exclude from participation in all sanctioned activities persons convicted of felonies, crimes of violence or crime against persons. MSYSA and its affiliate clubs have the right to perform criminal background checks of all coaches, administrators, and registered volunteers. MSYSA will not knowingly allow any person convicted of a felony, a crime of violence or crimes against persons to be in a position that would allow direct contact with children.
 
As of January 1, 2010, MSYSA requires all affiliated clubs and organizations to provide background checks for all rostered adult team officials. This requirement will become one of the benchmarks in establishing affiliates standing and could have a negative effect on their ability to participate in US Youth Soccer and state activities and events.
 
MSYSA has an agreement with the National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI) for background screening and has established a statewide background-screening program for its clubs. NCSI is a full-service screening organization that works in accordance with the Recommended Guidelines© established by the National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS). In addition to conducting the background search, NCSI is responsible for interpreting the results, issuing a “red light/green light determination” and handling all aspects of communication with applicants and the organizations to ensure the highest level of accuracy and confidentiality in the process. NCSI is also responsible for maintaining the privacy of applicant information obtained in the background search process.
 
MSYSA has the ability to confidentially view Red Light / Green Light results for applicants in all participating club accounts.  All accounts within the program will operate with the same set of:
·         Background Search Components
·         Criteria
·         Program Length (Annual program with a 6 month re-check)
 
Through participation in the MSYSA statewide program, individual clubs can take advantage of discounted pricing (only $20 for each person screened) and operate on a consistent platform with the other participating clubs throughout the state. Thus, all coaches and administrators are being screened in the same manner and using the same criteria.
 
All MSYSA affiliate clubs and organizations not using NCSI as their background screening provider are required to provide MSYSA the name of their selected background screening company, background screening contract start and end dates and the name of their club risk management point of contact. In addition, affiliates not using NCSI must provide MSYSA immediate notice of any negative background determinations that may affect an individual’s right to participate

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