June 23, 2019
The United States Congress has mandated that the National Governing Body (NGB) of all Olympic sports implement a Minor Athlete Abuse Prevention Policy (MAAPP). USA Swimming, our NGB, has produced a MAAPP for all USA Swimming clubs, athletes, and non-athletes. The purpose of this mandate is to reduce the risk areas for abuse in youth sports. These are very positive steps taken by Congress and USA Swimming to reduce the opportunities for abuse of the young athletes participating in sports.
USA Swimming and the YMCA already requires coaches and non-athlete members (officials) to go through backround checks and abuse prevention trainings. The MAAPP now mandates that all “Applicable Adults” agree to follow all of the requirements in the Minor Athlete Abuse Prevention Policy. “Applicable Adults” are all USA Swimming non-athlete members and adult member (athletes aged 18 and over), participating non-members (meet marshals, timers, computer operators, etc) club staff and board members, and any other adult authorized to have regular contact with or authority over minor athletes. SIMPLY PUT EVERYONE NEEDS TO AGREE TO FOLLOW THE MAAPP.
Acknowledgement of agreement will be done online through a “job sign-up” just like we do for things like small groups or team travel meets. The MAAPP is linked below. READ THROUGH THE MAAPP AND THEN USE THE “JOB SIGN-UP” TO ACKNOWLEDGE AGREEMENT. Parents read through the MAAPP, ask questions that come up. I don’t have all the answers, but we can work through them / figure them out.
A vast majority of the MAAPP are things that are a normal part of the way we already operate and/or the Oshkosh YMCA’s operating procedures. The major changes within the MAAPP will come with respect to electronic communication.
As I read the MAAPP, its major emphasis is (1) to make sure the adults only have contact with children in observable, interruptible places, (2) communication between adults and children is open and observable by the children’s legal guardian, and (3) the physical contact between adults and children is only done after a proper diagnosis and by a certified professional.
The major changes included in the MAAPP to the way OSHY normally runs are listed below.
Any text, email, or other electronic message between an applicable adult with authority over minor athletes and a minor athlete must copy the minor athlete’s legal guardian on the communication.
Hours of electronic communications are between 8 AM and 8 PM unless emergency circumstances exist or during travel for competition.
As athletes turn 18 they will be required to do an online Athlete Protection Training or they will be ineligible to participate in meets.