Our Policies

This list is not exhaustive, but covers all forms of media pertaining to the Football Club, including: Website, Programme, Social Media (Facebook) and the Fans’ Forum.

In terms of language used in any form of media, the following are deemed to be unacceptable and are not permitted under any circumstances:

  • Swearing
  • Personal abuse or threatening of any individual
  • Racism
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Libel or slander

Behaviour of the following kinds are also unacceptable:

  • Bullying of individuals
  • Personal agendas
  • Political agendas
  • Religious bias

Users of all of the Club’s media outlets should be aware of the following:

The Club is an Equal Opportunities Sports Club that welcomes all segments of the local community. Anyone who displays any of the aforementioned offensive characteristics is not welcome and the Club will remove them from the ground or ban them from having access to social media.

Going forward, anonymous names will not be permitted. Although difficult to police, the Club will not entertain or respond to any enquiry or message that does not come from a clearly identifiable source.

Terry Barratt
Chairman
Hitchin Town FC
16th May 2015

Privacy Policy

Hitchin Town FC takes the privacy of our services users very seriously.

Please read this Privacy Policy carefully to see how Hitchin Town FC will treat the personal information that you provide to us, either when using our website, or in any other circumstances when we collect data from you (including via email). We will take reasonable care to keep your information secure and to prevent any unauthorised access or use of it. We process all information in accordance with applicable UK data protection legislation.

By using our website or submitting information to us through or in connection with our website, you signify your consent to our collection, use and disclosure of your personal information in accordance with this Privacy Policy. If you do not agree with this Privacy Policy, you must not use our website or submit information to us through or in connection with it.
We may change this Privacy Policy from time to time and the change will take effect once the revised Privacy Policy is available on this Site. Therefore, please refer to this Privacy Policy each time you submit your personal information.

Your Information

We may ask you to provide information to us or collect data from you on different occasions, including at a number of points on the website, such as if you:

  • (i) e-mail enquiries, contributions or your views to us;
  • (ii) enter competitions;
  • (iii) register to receive or download information, newsletters or other documentation; or:
  • (iv) purchase goods or services from us (via the Kaizen Marketing website).

The information that you are asked to provide will vary depending on the reason for the collection. In some instances, for example, if you purchase goods or services from us, the provision of certain information will be mandatory

Cookies

We may also collect, process and use information about you and your use of the website (which may not personally identify you), including any forums you visit and how you arrived at our website. Such information may be collected through “traffic data” and may entail the use of “cookies” or other tracking technologies, “IP Addresses” or other numeric codes used to identify your computer.

Collection of information by third parties

When you use our website, other companies also collect certain information on you using anonymous identifiers, cookies and the other tracking technologies mentioned above. In this regard, we use Google Analytics to better understand how our customers navigate to and through our Site, how long customers spend visiting our content items and how often they return to visit our Site. Google Analytics also helps us to:

  • track the effectiveness of the money we spend on our digital marketing campaigns through Google Display Network Impression Reporting;
  • track the age range, gender, affinity categories (this includes lifestyle identifiers such as being a sports fans), in-market segments (such as product purchase interests) and other related categories through Google Analytics Demographics and Interest Reporting; and
  • reach people who have visited the Site through remarketing with Google Analytics. This may include Google and other third party vendors showing advertisements on sites across the Internet.

To opt out of Google’s use of cookies visit Google’s Ads Settings or the Network Advertising Initiative opt-out page.
You can delete cookies or configure your computer to reject them, although this may disable the Site’s ability to manage individual sessions.

Please note that if you choose to participate in any discussion forum on the Site you may disclose personal information about yourself to other participants. If you do so this is at your own risk.

How Hitchin Town FC uses your information

We will use your personal information:

  • (i) to respond to your enquiry;
  • (ii) to acknowledge any contribution that you may make;
  • (iii) to administer any relevant competition;
  • (iv) to send information to you;
  • (v) to fulfil any contract that we may enter into with you;
  • (vi) for research purposes;
  • (vii) to send marketing information to you in accordance with the provisions set out below; or
  • (viii) for other reasonable purposes for which you have provided such information.

If you become a customer of ours by purchasing goods or services from us we may send you further information that is related to your purchase, by post or e-mail, or contact you by telephone.

We may wish to send you marketing information and offer details by post, e-mail or SMS text. By providing your information you are agreeing to Hitchin Town FC contacting you in this manner to provide you with such marketing information in accordance with the terms of this Privacy Policy.

In addition, our subsidiary companies and selected third parties may like to send you marketing information, by post, e-mail. We will only allow them to do this if you have indicated that you are happy to receive such information (either when you submit your details to us or at a later stage).

If you do not wish to receive any of the above information or be contacted by us in accordance with the above, please update your preferences online (where this facility is available) or alternatively write to the Club Administrator at the address below.

Sharing information

We will share your information with our affiliates and third party service providers if this is necessary or reasonably required for any of the purposes above. Such third party service providers are not entitled to use your information for their own purposes. We may also share your information with third parties for marketing purposes (in accordance with the paragraph entitled “How Hitchin Town FC uses the information” above) if you have indicated that you are happy to receive such information. Some of these third parties may be located outside of the United Kingdom, including in countries where data protection laws might not exist or be of a lower standard than the EU.

We may also share your information with government, law enforcement agencies and regulatory bodies when we consider the disclosure to be fair, reasonable and legal.

Protection of information

We are committed to protecting your privacy and we implement various security measures in relation to our processing and transfer of personal data. However, the nature of the Internet is such that the data may in some circumstances flow over networks without full security measures and could be accessible to unauthorised persons.

Links

This Site may contain links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of these sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave this Site and to read the privacy statements applicable on those sites. This privacy policy does not apply to information collected on third parties’ sites, unless specified (as below).

Our online sales site, operated by Kaizen Ticketing Solutions Ltd., has its own Privacy Policy which the Club has adopted with regard to this aspect of its operations.

Your right to access the information

You have the right to access the information that Hitchin Town FC holds about you in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998. In order to do this please make a written application to the Data Protection Officer, at the address provided at the end of this notice. Hitchin Town FC may require you to provide verification of your identity to provide a copy of the information that it holds. Please note that in certain circumstances Hitchin Town FC may withhold access to your information where it has the right to do so under current data protection legislation.

Updating your information

In the event that there is a change to your personal information for example your contact details, please let us know of this by updating your details online (where this facility is available) or writing to the Club Administrator, at the address provided below, so that we can keep your information up to date and accurate.

Contact us

If you have any queries about this Privacy Policy, contact the Club Administrator.

The aim of this policy is to ensure that everyone is treated fairly and with respect and that our club is equally accessible to all.

Hitchin Town Football Club is responsible for setting standards and values to apply throughout the club at every level. Football belongs to and should be enjoyed by anyone who wants to participate in it.

Hitchin Town Football Club in all its activities will not discriminate or in any way, treat anyone less favourably on grounds of age, gender, gender reassignment, sexual orientation, marital status, race, nationality, ethnic origin, colour, religion or belief, ability or disability. The club will ensure it treats people fairly and with respect and that it will provide access and opportunities for all members of the community to take part in and enjoy its activities.

Hitchin Town Football Club will not tolerate harassment, bullying, abuse or victimisation of an individual, which for the purposes of this policy and the actions and sanction applicable is regarded as discrimination. This includes sexual or racially based harassment or other discriminatory behaviour, whether physical or verbal. The club will work to ensure that such behaviour is met with appropriate action in whatever context it occurs.

Hitchin Town Football Club is committed to taking positive action where inequalities exist and to the development of a programme of ongoing training and awareness raising events and activities in order to promote the eradication of discrimination and promote equality in football.

Hitchin Town Football Club is committed to a policy of equal treatment of all members and requires all members to abide and adhere to these policies and the requirements of the Equality Act 2010.

Hitchin Town Football Club commits itself to the immediate investigation of any claims when brought to its attention, of discrimination on the above grounds and where such is found to be the case, a requirement that the practice stop and sanctions are imposes as appropriate.

This policy is fully supported by the Club Officers who are responsible for the implementation of this policy.

Our commitment is to confront and eliminate discrimination whether by reason of age, gender, gender reassignment, sexual orientation, marital status, race, nationality, ethnic origin, colour, religion or belief, ability or disability and to encourage equal opportunities.

1. Hitchin Town Football Club acknowledges its responsibility to safeguard the welfare of every child and young person who has been entrusted to its care and is committed to working to provide a safe environment for all members. A child or young person is anyone under the age of 18 engaged in any club football activity. We subscribe to The Football Association’s (The FA) Safeguarding Children – Policy and Procedures and endorse and adopt the Policy Statement contained in that document.

2. The key principles of The FA Safeguarding Children Policy are that:

  • the child’s welfare is, and must always be, the paramount consideration
  • all children and young people have a right to be protected from abuse regardless of their age, gender, disability, race, sexual orientation, faith or belief
  • all suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately
  • working in partnership with other organisations, children and young people and their parents/carers is essential.

We acknowledge that every child or young person who plays or participates in football should be able to take part in an enjoyable and safe environment and be protected from poor practice and abuse.

Hitchin Town Football Club recognises that this is the responsibility of every adult involved in our club.

3. Hitchin Town Football Club has a role to play in safeguarding the welfare of all children and young people by protecting them from physical, sexual or emotional harm and from neglect or bullying. It is noted and accepted that The Football Association’s Safeguarding Children Regulations (see The FA Handbook) applies to everyone in football whether in a paid or voluntary capacity. This means whether you are a volunteer, match official, helper on club tours, football coach, club official or medical staff.

4. We endorse and adopt The FA’s Responsible Recruitment guidelines for recruiting volunteers and we will:

  • specify what the role is and what tasks it involves
  • request identification documents
  • as a minimum meet and chat with the applicant(s) and where possible interview people before appointing them
  • ask for and follow up with 2 references before appointing someone
  • where eligible require an FA accepted Enhanced Criminal Record Check (CRC) with Barring List Check in line with current FA policy and regulations.

All current Hitchin Town Football Club members working in eligible roles, with children and young people – such as managers and coaches are required to hold an in-date FA accepted Enhanced CRC with Barring List check as part of responsible recruitment practice.

If there are concerns regarding the appropriateness of an individual who is already involved or who has approached us to become part of
Hitchin Town Football Club guidance will be sought from The Football Association. It is noted and accepted that The FA will consider the relevance and significance of the information obtained via the CRC Process and that all suitability decisions will be made in accordance with legislation and in the best interests of children and young people.

It is accepted that The FA aims to prevent people with a history of relevant and significant offending from having contact with children or young people and the opportunity to influence policies or practice with children or young people. This is to prevent direct sexual or physical harm to children and to minimise the risk of ‘grooming’ within football.

5. Hitchin Town Football Club supports The FA’s Whistle Blowing Policy. Any adult or young person with concerns about a adult in a position of trust with football can ‘whistle blow’ by contacting The FA Safeguarding Team on 0800 169 1863, by writing to The FA Case Manager at The Football Association, Wembley Stadium, PO Box 1966, London SW1P 9EQ, by emailing Safeguarding@TheFA.com or alternatively by going direct to the Police, Children’s Social Care or the NSPCC.

Hitchin Town Football Club encourages everyone to know about The FA’s Whistle Blowing Policy and to utilise it if necessary.

6. Hitchin Town Football Club has appointed a Club Welfare Officer in line with The FA’s role profile and required completion of the Safeguarding Children and Welfare Officers Workshop. The post holder will be involved with Welfare Officer training provided by The FA and/or County FA. The Club Welfare Officer is the first point of contact for all club members regarding concerns about the welfare of any child or young person. The Club Welfare Officer will liaise directly with the County FA (CFA) Welfare Officer and will be familiar with the procedures for referring any concerns. They will also play a proactive role in increasing awareness of Respect, poor practice and abuse amongst club members.

7. We acknowledge and endorse The FA’s identification of bullying as a category of abuse. Bullying of any kind is not acceptable at our club. If bullying does occur, all players or parents/carers should be able to tell and know that incidents will be dealt with promptly. Incidents need to be reported to the Club Welfare Officer in cases of serious bullying the CFA Welfare Officer may be contacted.

8. Respect codes of conduct for Players, Parents/ Spectators, Officials and Coaches have been implemented by Hitchin Town Football Club. In order to validate these Respect codes of conduct the club has clear actions it will take regarding repeated or serious misconduct at club level and acknowledges the possibility of potential sanctions which may be implemented by the County FA in more serious circumstances.

9. Reporting your concerns about the welfare of a child or young person. Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility if you are worried about a child it is important that you report your concerns – no action is not an option.

i. If you are worried about a child then you need to report your concerns to the Club Welfare Officer.
ii. If the issue is one of poor practice the Club Welfare Officer will either:

  • deal with the matter themselves or
  • seek advice from the CFA Welfare Officer

iii. If the concern is more serious – possible child abuse, where possible, contact the CFA Welfare Officer first, then immediately contact the Police or Children’s Social Care.
iv. If the child needs immediate medical treatment take them to a hospital or call an ambulance and tell them this is a child protection concern. Let your Club Welfare Officer know what action you have taken, they in turn will inform the CFA Welfare Officer.
v. If at any time you are not able to contact your Club Welfare Officer or the matter is clearly serious then you can either:

  • contact your CFA Welfare Officer directly
  • contact The FA Safeguarding Team on 0800 169 1863 or Safeguarding@TheFA.com
  • contact the Police or Children’s Social Care
  • call the NSPCC 24 hour Helpline for advice on 0808 800 5000 or text 88858 or email help@nspcc.org.uk

NB – The FA’s Safeguarding Children Policy and Procedures are available via – www.TheFA.com/footballrules-governance/safeguarding – click on ‘Raising Awareness – Best Practice Downloads’, the Policy and Procedures document is within the resources area. The policy outlines in detail what to do if you are concerned about the welfare of a child and includes flow diagrams which describe this process. How to make a referral is also covered in the Safeguarding Children workshop. Participants are given the opportunity to discuss how this feels and how best they can prepare themselves to deal with such a situation. For more information on this workshop contact your County Welfare Officer.

10. Further advice on Safeguarding Children matters can be obtained from:
Paul Males, Hitchin Town FC Club Safeguarding Officer
T: 07990 598095
E: chairman@hitchintownyouth.co.uk

County Football Association’s Welfare Officer
T: Richard Drake
E: Richard.drake@hertfordshirefa.com

www.TheFA.com/football-rules-governance/safeguarding
Emailing – Safeguarding@TheFA.com
The FA Safeguarding Children general enquiry line – 0845 210 8080