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Membership Alert: SafeSport Certification


Horton
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USAWS sent out an email today. If you did not get the email here is a link to the web version.

 

I heard some grumbling last week about this. "Why should I have to spend my time and money. I am beyond reproach because I .... blaaa blaa blaaaa..... If I have to do this I will just stay home" To those people I say "It costs $35 and about 2 hours of your life. If everyone who is required to do this does it and it prevents 1 person from being victimized it is worth it.

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@Horton I fully agree. I am safe sport trained and have been for a number of years as a requirement for my job as a high school coach. I have recently been advising on safe sport practices at the adult level with another coaching job. Implementation of a club wide program was a requirement of a grant we received. Directives from many USOC affiliated sport divisions have been coming down in the past few years on implementation of the program. It is the world we live in now and if people "just stay home" that is their choice. I don't see the safe sport requirement running anyone off in this sport.

 

Just to note that Safe Sport is FREE to USAWS members. I am not sure where you got the $35 from. If a member needs a criminal background check I believe that is $23. It is a short course is all online. It is completely worth it prevents one victim.

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@MattP I may have gotten the dollar amount wrong. I was referring to the background check.

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@ms I understand people's irritation with having to jump through these hoops. I can't say it enough - if everybody go through this training and it prevents 1 incident it is worth it.

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@Horton.

You know the deal!

 

A couple questions?

Safe sport is a derivative of the usoc, does awsa need to belong to the usoc? If so why?

From what I have gathered safe sport has no teeth! And enough money can overturn any decisions that they may come up with.

These continued mandates are being implemented with out membership approval, Why?

 

I am not against protecting our sports youth from sexual predators. What I am against is our sports governing body's untimely announcement of this policy and announcing after a deadline has passed.

The mandate states March 26???

Today is April 4

 

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@Jody_Seal and if it protects one young person it's worth all of it

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@ Horton

So you have turned socialist! Tyranny in the sport will not be tolerated and membership deserves conversation before implimentation.

Can we not police our sport with out a unnecessary overseeing body making mandates that our organization is not benefiting from?

Transparency is still non exsistance with this sport, again membership gets jumped and kicked in the ass again.

 

 

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@horton " if it protects one young person it's worth all of it"

 

Do you honestly think this, or any other training, will stop a sexual predator? Seriously?

The people this "training" is targeting are NOT the problem, but are the ones who are forced to jump through "just one more" stupid hoop to participate and contribute.

 

@BoneHead why was it you dropped your ratings? If I recall, didn't it have something to do with the extra BS required and the straw that broke the camel's back?

 

@Than_Bogan I understand the benefit of awareness and taking complaints seriously, but exactly what is the "enormous value there"? How many rational people need "training" to know its wrong to use a position of authority, perceived or otherwise, to gain something inappropriate? Yes, there are some assholes out there, but this training will have zero affect on them.

 

How much of this is simply organizational fear that some trip & fall lawyer will file a huge lawsuit against some idiot and name USAWS as liable?

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@Bruce_Butterfield

Imagine you see an adult skier being inappropriate with and underage skier.

 

Normally you may or may not say something to the underage skier's parent. The parent may or may not care and may or not believe you. Awkward and unpleasant in many ways.

 

Under the rules of SafeSport you are obligated to report what you saw to SafeSport and then you get to walk away. Not exactly happy days but much less painful for you. SafeSport then does whatever they do.

 

In this instance the odds of a predator being investigated improves with SafeSport.

 

So yes the training as part of the larger process could stop a sex predator sooner then without it.

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@horton, sorry, I disagree. I don't see "training" improving the odds of anything being investigated. If there is behavior by a 20 something coach with a 13-15yo, that will be seen and addressed. No parent will let that slide. If its a 19yo sending graphic texts to a 17yo, that's a different story and very different action needed. Training won't affect either example.

 

I don't see this as anything more than CYA on the part of the umbrella organization. Yeah, I get that the issues of lawsuits and liability are real, but this or any other "training" will have ZERO impact on reporting inappropriate behavior. It will only provide a tiny bit of cover if anything nasty ever goes to court. All bets are off at that point anyway.

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Oh, and the "if it protects just one person, its worth it" argument is absolute bullshit. I can come up with thousands of examples that will be hugely expensive, but "may" protect just one person, and apply your emotional statement as justification. That in no way means its the best, or even a good solution. EVERYTHING has a cost, benefit and likelihood of success. Almost every situation will have alternate solutions, also with cost, benefit, and likelihood of success. We as a society need to start using the that grey mush between our ears instead of jumping on the latest bandwagon to appease the lawyers and rolling over to the current crop of vocal complainers.

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@Bruce_Butterfield perhaps the actual training is mostly useless but it is just one necessary ingredient in a greater system which is trying to address potential evil.

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@Horton Maybe safe sport should mandate parenting and morals education also. Each usaws parent must every 2 years prescribe to continued education to teach them moral turpitude and how to spot predatory influences upon their children involved in the sport...

What about a dress code in the sport? Why not? The tennis association has a dress code for juniors...

 

CYA

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first read of this thread sounded political.

surprised its still here. As someone who does not participate in tournament skiing or anything related as it so f'up for the average skier, I see no need for it. Less government! I am sure we can police our own sport. Not that big. I agree with @ Jody

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Please tell me this is an april fools joke. The sport is amost dead. Add another nail. Whats next dna swabs and fingerprinting? Has everyone been professionally trained to fuel boats? How about hazmat certification? Gasoline is a hazmat...
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I can see this type of certification and training in certain situations, such as where there is a kids team and the coaches and officials involved go through this. An example might be the officials for a Jr US Open or other type event. I have a hard time understanding why it would be necessary or valuable for those running tournaments and other similar activities that are not limited to kids only. Seems like asking all your officials to participate is not addressing where you need it.
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Please take note that effective March 23, 2019, as mandated by the U.S. Center for SafeSport:

•All USA Water Ski & Wake Sports board members are required to complete the SafeSport Training and Certification

•All sport discipline organizations’ board members are required to complete the SafeSport Training and Certification

•All Team USA athletes and staff (manager, coach, physician/trainer and support staff) age 18+ participating in an international event are required to complete a background check and complete the SafeSport Training and Certification

•All Team USA athletes age 17+ participating in an international event are required (with parental consent) to complete the SafeSport Training and Certification

The existing requirement for all show directors and assistant show directors to undergo a background check and complete SafeSport Training and Certification remains in effect.

The U.S. Center for SafeSport and USA Water Ski & Wake Sports strongly recommend that all members of USA Water Ski & Wake Sports, particularly club presidents, club board members, volunteers and officials (judges, drivers, safety coordinators and scorers) complete SafeSport Training and Certification.

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Ok, here’s a serious question:

 

“All Team USA athletes age 17+ participating in an international event are required (with parental consent) to complete the SafeSport Training and Certification“

 

What happens if the parent of a 17 yo team member denies consent? Is the athlete denied the ability to compete at an international event or do they continue without the training? This is either usurping the parent’s authority or it is not a real requirement.

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I have to do something similar this year to be an assistant coach for 3-4th grade baseball. This is just the world we live in now and not USAWS' or USOC' fault. It's the perverts' (and other abusers) fault and they should be catching crap for it, not USAWS or the USOC.
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Why I think this is so valuable:

 

The only remotely practical defense against the tiny fraction of truly bad people is the giant majority of good people.

 

And yet it's essentially always easier to look away. Who wants to get involved? And it can be really easy to convince yourself that it's probably nothing. AND it's damn near impossible to believe accusations against people you (think you) know.

 

This means the army of good people, without further education and incentive, are actually not very good at preventing these kinds of problems. Indeed, some of the most famous perpetrators got away with repeated actions for decades. Are we to believe that at no time did they come in contact with a good person? That's silly, of course -- but good people turned their backs. Or they simply didn't understand what they could do.

 

Finally a note about "if it saves one person..." I agree that this sort of phrase is usually used in a 100% bogus argument that assumes either zero costs or infinite resources, and that takes no account of real-world tradeoffs. However, @Horton was not making such an argument -- at least I don't think so. I believe he is arguing that the cost of this is a reasonable tradeoff to make for the benefit of stopping this once. I haven't decided if I agree with that, but I am very confident that the cost of this is easily justified by the benefit of stopping this many, many times.

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I respect everyone elses opinions. The problem with this is we keep talking about growing the sport and making it more fun yet HQ keeps adding more bureaucracy, cost and hoops to jump through to participate.

 

Make up your mind, grow the sport (less bs and more fun) or kill it by adding this kind of crap.

 

Was there actually a problem? Are kids travelling with coaches and staying in hotels with them like gymnastics? Most tournaments are very well supervised and in public places with adults everywhere.

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I'd bet that this was 100% a requirement of the insurance company that insures USAWS. USAWS didn't wake up one day and say "let's make it harder to be involved in the sport." What insurance company in the world right now wouldn't be aware of these issues and the potential lawsuits around them and require their policy holders to take steps to avoid them?
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This is complete BS. USA waterski needs to look at this and think does a tournament director and driver judge really need to do this training? There are multiple people in the boat during an event and for so sort of predators action is very small to none. If it did happen he most likely not be invited or welcome to another tournament. What happens if somebody comes back with a shady background? What does that mean? Is he banned from the sport? What are the repercussions?

What about the professionals such as police firefighters doctors RN and so forth who have to answer or maintain to a higher standard? This is a total slap in the face. This is just another nail in the coffin for the sport. More money out of our pocket.

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One thing going through the Safesport training does is put the onus on you to have to defend yourself in the future if you don't report something. Even if you don't deem it reportable, if something later goes to court you are getting f$cked. And it will be on your own dime because no one is going to pay for your lawyers but you. No thanks.
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All a bunch of BS. I completely agree with @Bruce_Butterfield Safe sport has no way to enforce the law. If you see something inappropriate call someone who can do something about it. Call the damn police and have it investigated by a law enforcement entity. I agree it’s the latest bandwagon to ride. And marking it harder and harder to get involved in skiing. And as @Jody_Seal seal said the next mandate with be on all officials. We are gonna need to build a wall to keep the remaining members from hauling ass. Great job USA Waterski
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Just wanted to hopefully clarify a few concerns that have been brought up. This new mandate is not a decision USA Waterski made. It was not anything we could take to our members to vote on. As long as we are the national governing body of waterskiing and a member of the USOC safesport is a mandatory requirement.

 

Arguing if we should be a part of the USOC is a good debate with solid points on both sides but a separate debate.

 

At the end of the day we want to create a safe environment for our skiers and members and so does the USOC. And as we all know, this day and age, every time something in the world happens like it did with USA gymnastic, everyone else has to suffer the changes that get mandated upon us.

 

Right now this effects about 100 of our 7000 AWSA members, just board members and team USA athletes and staff over 18, it is not required for site owners or officials, and lets hope it does not get to that.

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Actually I deleted my post because I had to check on something and didn't want to spout incorrect info. What's interesting is that USA Cycling is a USOC and Safesport member. USABMX is a sanctioning body under the USA Cycling banner. BMX IS a USOC sport but does not require Safesport. USA Cycling does require it. How is this different from the USOC/USAWaterski/AWSA relationship?

 

Fact of the matter is, everyone gets lumped in and forced to do this stupid stuff because some pervert can't keep his hands off little boys and girls or some asshole can't seem to not beat up his wife or girlfriend. 95% of us that are forced to do these courses tune out and just get through them and don't remember jackall from it. All so somebody can check a box and say we comply.

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Completed my Safe Sport certification yesterday. No big deal, as Jeff said this is a USOC mandate. The real question is what does the USOC provide AWSA as I have advocated for a long time we need to be out of the USOC
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"And as we all know, this day and age, every time something in the world happens like it did with USA gymnastic, everyone else has to suffer the changes that get mandated upon us." As a founding father said when we give up freedom for safety, we deserve neither.
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