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USASA SafeSport training

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So, does anyone else see this training that USASA is asking for as a bit much?

 

The reason for this is "As an adult competing in a shared venue with a minor it is important that you view and pass the online materials." If this is a concern for USASA, having adults and minors competing in a shared venue, then I am thinking they might have a much larger issue on their hands. Asking competitors to complete this now less than a week before the event does not put a good vibe moving forward. Anyone else thrown off by this? (Full disclosure, I have no idea the content as I have not clicked the link)

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I’ve never seen a situation where all the competitors at an event had to complete the SafeSport, it’s intended for coaches and instructors (or was several years ago when I was involved in competitive archery).

I had to complete this as a competitive archery instructor, but that’s a very different deal; some aspects of the instruction and coaching involved “hands on” adjustment of an athlete’s shoulders, elbows, arms, etc. Hip and lower torso alignment was always done by example, never directly. 

IIRC, I think it was just a matter of clicking through some forms, affirming that you’ve read them, and agreeing to the conditions.

 

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Maybe it's just me, but in a sport where it is very public, and my group doesn't go at the same time as anyone young, I just don't like the idea that I must defend being a decent person with training that will change nothing. It isn't like some unscrupulous person will take the training and suddenly decide not to do an action.

I guess it just bugs me to have to be on the defensive on such things... I don't like having to take a test to state whether I can be a good parent or be around other kids.

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Looks like SafeSport is applied inconsistently across the different NGB’s for different sports under the USOC umbrella. 

Whats really weird is the for skiing and snowboarding, it’s applied to athletes except masters (from https://77media.blob.core.windows.net/uscss/1518645671608.covered-individuals-by-ngb.pdf):

U.S. Ski & Snowboard Association
• Staff
• Members holding a USSA coaching license
• Members holding a USSA officials’ license
Licensed USSA athletes (non-masters)
• Members at USSA clubs whom the club formally designates to be in a position of
authority over athletes
• USSA governance board members

It is unfortunate that it’s required of athletes not in a position of authority over other athletes, and like you say, doesn’t actually prevent bad actors. And no one likes to be tarred with that particular brush in such broad strokes. 

It’s a bad case of CYA all around, but no one wants to be the one who proposed relaxing an existing rule, and have that come up In a court case or civil suit 5 years later. 

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I also reached out to them in an email. Here was their response:

"Safe Sport passed this along for my reply.  This is a new compliance recently released by the center for SafeSport.  While we are not requiring it this year we are asking for your participation.  Next year it will be a membership requirement for all adult snowboard or freeski competitors across all competitions in the United States under US Ski and Snowboard or USASA.."

So, not mandatory this year, but mandatory next. I wonder what this will do to, or if it will have any impact on the participation rate for this organization. This course will do nothing to prevent anything, but there are indeed legal implications to such a course, including whether there is scoring and if they keep records. If someone ever gets any answer wrong,  could this prohibit someone from a position of employment due to the nature of this course in the future? I am in a very highly regulated field where I have taken background checks for different classifications of access. When I worked with a trading entity, as I am an IT consultant, their background check went all the way back to high school, and they required me to disclose the contents of a Driving to Endanger ticket from 1986. (I was doing doughnuts in a parking lot with a car that had a blower sticking out of the hood in the snow. Cop saw an easy win if I fought it.) Imagine the outcome of a single failed answer in one of these such third party courses.

I see this as an issue with me competing next year.

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I have looked into this further. All adult individuals who are not looking at this as a career sport should think hard on this.

SafeSport was created to deal with the issues stemming from the Olympic Gymnastics scandal related to sexual abuse. This was a program designed so as to deflect the committee from the blame of bad hires and the liabilities legally therein. (SIC: https://deadspin.com/safesport-the-usocs-attempt-to-stop-child-abuse-is-se-1826279217 ) Anyone who signs up for these courses enter into their database and are then subject to their jurisdiction for all matters registered with them. The long and short of it is, anyone registered in that database can be accused of horrific events, and the only recourse therein is through arbitration with SafeSport. Unless you can guarantee you will never make an enemy who can look you up, you are at personal liability as this is governed by a US government body, so it will show up on all background checks. 

From SafeSports own complaint page: "YOU MAY REPORT ANONYMOUSLY. If you choose to report anonymously, please write ANONYMOUS where it says "Your full name." " and you can file any complaint against any registered party and it will be on your permanent record unless you can get arbitration to remove it.

If this is going to be the requirement for USASA membership for me to compete next year, then this will be my last year competing with this body, or as long as this restriction is in place.

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Just noticed the section I posted earlier was for USSA, not USASA. 

Are you sure that competitors are required to complete Safesport for USASA?  I checked their policy on the website:

https://www.usasa.org/resources/safesport/safesport-code

and all the verbiage is about “USASA staff member, plus all coaches, officials, judges, and volunteer members”. 

The pages says:

“As a condition of membership, all USASA members agree to abide by the SafeSport Code.”

“Agreeing to abide by” could be interpreted as not necessarily having to register, just agree that it’s a good way to behave.

And further down in the section pertaining to background checks it states that you have to have an “other than competitor” type of membership to register for the b/g check:

“The process for screening is simple and generally takes about five minutes. But you must have a current, or in process, USASA coach, judge/official or club volunteer membership to register for the screening.

This whole mess may be the result of one individual incorrectly interpreting the policy too strictly. Have you tried challenging whomever you’re dealing with and pointing them to the published policy on their own organizations’s website?

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I received an email today. I confirmed it is not mandatory this year, but will be next year on. Here is the content:

 

Hello,

 

As an adult member of the USASA community we would like you to participate is Safe Sport education training prior to competing at USASA National Championships. This important online education is free.  As an adult competing in a shared venue with a minor it is important that you view and pass the online materials. If you have already completed this training this year you may disregard this message.

 

The training is free and your information will be recorded and sent to us, there is nothing more for you to do!  Please take the 45 minutes needed to complete this before registration on Friday at noon on 3/29/19.

 

Sincerely,

 

Mike Mallon

When I asked if this was a requirement, this was the reply:

Frank,

 

Safe Sport passed this along for my reply.  This is a new compliance recently released by the center for SafeSport.  While we are not requiring it this year we are asking for your participation.  Next year it will be a membership requirement for all adult snowboard or freeski competitors across all competitions in the United States under US Ski and Snowboard or USASA..

 

Sincerely,

 

Mike

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I agree it is common, for the coaches. If someone wants to volunteer, they too would be required. The reasoning is due to the additional contact and time spent with minors whom are not family related. 

The new requirement for competitors would be anthologist to requiring this online course to buy a lift ticket, as both provide the same level of contact to unknown minors. Simply put, you may talk to them in the lift line or on the chair, but  since all competitors age out of any program past 18, there is no additional contact.

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I'm sorry to come out as a prick but am I feeling this whole deal with USASA and safesport being real f--king stupid? 

I get it we're trying to help the victims, and the likes. Ok, ok, ok... however, are we gonna kill the thrill of sports itself in the name of "-extremely excessive- potential preventative measures"? 

I'm real glad I've retired from racing many moons ago and I prefer to go freestyling or whatnot, for -THAT- is the true art form of sports, not some competition where you have the odds of getting your behind creamed just because somebody doesn't like you and chose to retaliate via safesports? 

F--k this... that's what I'm saying at the moment. 

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Thank you LeeW and no, I don't think you are wrong. Thank you for posting your thoughts as this will die off if complacency is allowed and those who object (like myself) are forced out of competing, and then out of the love of the sport. In no way can I now promote USASA in good conscience, for the young or the older.

If my kid is not world cup level by 18, and goes into an industry requiring background checks as his career, he too will have to retire, or relocate, like Vic Wild.

The anonymous aspect is terrifying and destroys the checks and balances of due process. It can't happen to you until it does, and who really can afford to take that chance.

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None yet other than I have not renewed my membership. I will go EICSL or not race at all over being subjugated to the SafeSport jurisdiction.

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