THE SAFESPORT ACT
As we look ahead to 2020, we at the national office have begun preparing for the implementation and full compliance with new federal policies and procedures which go into effect in the New Year.
One law in particular we remain focused on incorporating seamlessly into our operations is The Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and SafeSport Authorization Act or “The SafeSport Act”.
Passed by the federal government in late 2017 as U.S. Senate Bill 534, The SafeSport Act requires amateur athletics governing bodies to report abuse awareness immediately to local or federal law enforcement, or a child-welfare agency designated by the Justice Department. The U.S. Senate Bill also requires mandatory education and training for all adults in direct contact with amateur athletes. Though USSSA is not a Governing Body, the implications of the act as well as the implication of the act on insurance requirements do affect USSSA and its members
We at USSSA are committed to full compliance with this new law and know its requirements will ultimately help protect our Athletes. As it stands, USSSA and its State Offices will introduce new components in 2020 to ensure full implementation of The SafeSport Act into our organizational operations:
Mandatory Reporting Protocols
- If you see something you must say something and report it within 24 hours. Please go to USSSA.COM/SafeSport to report and remember it is the law.
- Education & Training Classes
- The National Office will be sending out a dedicated e-mail Mid-January with detailed direction on registration, tracking and protocols for Education and Training. The good news is once the coach takes the classes online they will be compliant for multiple years.
- We have partnered with purebaseball.org and it is 100% FREE online classes for all USSSA National Staff, State Offices (All directors at any level), Coaches, Umpires, Parents and Athletes
- Reminder, Pure baseball is applicable for all sports outside of soccer and will update accordingly
- Background Checks
- All coaches on a USSSA roster will need to have had a background check starting on January 1, 2020. The coaches will be asked a question that requires a YES or NO, If YES the coach is telling USSSA that they have taken a criminal background check and has passed. If NO, the coach will see a link to JDP our background check company. The coach will need to fill out the information and will receive an e-mail from JDP within 2-3 days most of the time with a good/clear or there is an issue and the coach will have 5 days to appeal. (currently working to update this process to make it more thorough and will be launched as soon as it is available)
- Directors this is critical to let all coaches know that it is imperative to plan ahead, it will take 2-3 days to get approved in the system and that is best case scenario. Example; if the coach has lived in an area over the last 7 years and those counties or cities do not have all the records online the data will need to be pulled by hand and that will add 5-10 days.
- Each coach and Directors background check will be $29.99, year two will be cheaper as the entire history of the coach will not be needed. This pricing structure will rotate every two year to the $29.99. (prices are subject to change)
- Expect to receive an e-mail detailing a more in-depth discussion on team registrations.
- Yes we will be doing background checks on umpires beginning January 1st, all USSSA registered umpires will need a background check that registers post January 1st for the 2020 season.
- USSSA will be covering the cost of the background check as it will be part of his/her umpire registration fee for the 2020 season.
- Expect to receive an e-mail detailing a more in-depth discussion on umpire registrations.
- State Offices
- Please add a link in a prominent location on your website to usssa.com/safesport.
- Also reminder we will be doing posts on social media every month on the 7th and 21st so please re-post, tweet or forward out, we will be dropping them at noon eastern time.
- Please make sure all of your directors, Area Directors, Tournament Directors, State Office employees and umpires have been cleared via the JDP background check, accessed in your manager portal.
- Reminder we will be sending out a dedicated e-mail Mid-January for the online classes for all USSSA, they are 100% FREE.
- Reminder all coaches for All State games will need to have and cleared a background check, planning ahead is a key.
- Please know the Law, it is a critical for all of our success.
- We are here to educate our umpires, coaches, athletes and parents, any questions please e-mail SafeSport@USSSA.org.
Director’s please note, due to USSSA’s membership with the United States Soccer Federation, the soccer program will continue to follow the steps already established within the national soccer registration process following the SafeSport Act.
Please take the time to understand the SafeSport Act and how it pertains to you, your events, and structure within your state.
We appreciate your continued support of USSSA as we continue our mission to enrich the lives of Athletes at all levels and provide a fun, inclusive and safe experience for all. Wishing each of you a joyful New Year.
Q: What is SafeSport? SafeSport is an initiative created by the United States Olympic Committee to recognize, reduce and respond to misconduct in sport. It includes six categories: bullying, harassment, hazing, emotional misconduct, physical misconduct and sexual misconduct, including child sexual abuse.
USSSA should be a positive and rewarding experience for our youth. In an effort to create a safe environment within our sports and because it is also required by law (Senate Bill 534), all participating adults that have contact with minor athletes, at minimum, should undergo a background check that searches both the National Criminal Database and the National Sex Offender Registry.
Was created by USA Baseball to educate coaches, parents and athletes on the protocols of the SafeSport Act. USSSA has adopted the Pure baseball education process that will be free to all USSSA members (All sports excluding Soccer). Pure Baseball education focuses on reporting, education, and training for minor athlete safety policies.