Safe Sport Newsletter


In this Newsletter

Volume 12
August 2015

  1. Welcome
  2. Safe Sport Updates
  3. Safe Sport Events
  4. Resources
  5. Reminders 
  6. Safe Sport Awareness

Mark Your Calendar

APT Renewal Course 

13 Helpful Links

  1. USA Swimming Safe Sport
  2. USA Swimming Education
  3. USOC Safe Sport
  4. Stop It Now! Child Sexual Abuse Prevent
  5. National Children's Advocacy Center
  6. Stop bullying
  7. National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
  8. Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network
  9. Child Welfare League of America
  10. Safe 4 Athletes
  11. radKIDS
  12. National Children's Advocacy Center Lookup
  13. Safe Horizon

USA Swimming Safe Sport Contacts 

Susan Woessner,
Director of Safe Sport
swoessner@usaswimming.org Elizabeth Hoendervoogt,
Safe Sport Coordinator

Maggie Vail
Safe Sport Education Specialist




Sponsored by: Team Unify

USA Swimming Safe Sport Newsletter

The purpose of this newsletter is to provide a foundation that allows for direct on-going communication with each of you. Information contained within will cover the most current Safe Sport related information. If you have any feedback, comments or suggestions, please e-mail us atathleteprotection@usaswimming.org.

Safe Sport Updates

APT Renewal Course Coming September 1! We are excited to announce the release of the Athlete Protection Training Renewal Course. This forty-five minute, scenario-based training is required of all renewing non-athlete members. It will be available at www.usaswimming.org/protect.

Athlete Fellowship Program! The Safe Sport Fellowship is a year-long leadership development program designed for athlete members of USA Swimming who wish to be more involved in the governance of the organization with particular emphasis on Safe Sport. Fellows will work closely with Safe Sport staff members to develop projects to bring the Safe sport message to local swim clubs and increase awareness of the Safe Sport movement. The Fellowship is anchored by three Leadership Institutes, where fellows will have the opportunity to dive deeper into leadership development practices and set personal goals. Athletes aged 15 and older are eligible to apply. More information and application instructions will be available in late September.

Safe Sport Events

Regional Coaches Clinics! This fall, Safe Sport staff are traveling to the four Regional Coaches Clinics to facilitate conversation about strategies for sustaining a safe, healthy environment on your team. The attendees at the recent Norfolk, VA clinic participated in great discussion on this topic and the Safe Sport Staff are excited about this same opportunity at RCCs in Austin, TX (8/21-8/23); Tulsa, OK (9/18-9/20); and Fairfield, CA (10/23-10/25). For further information please go here.

Convention! Convention is quickly approaching and we are excited to share our Workshop plan with you. We believe this year’s lineup keeps up the momentum for local level engagement generated at the LSC Safe Sport Chair’s Workshop this past June. Please consider supporting the Safe Sport Workshops as they have been planned to be valuable for any member of your Convention delegation. Safe Sport sessions are as follows:

Tuesday, September 29, 3-4pm; Safe Sport 101: Program Overview for New Volunteers; This will be a 60 minute broad strokes overview of the program plus some scenario based discussion. Any new LSC Chairs or other interested folks are welcome to join us. Veteran chairs do not need to attend. 

Tuesday, September 29, 4-8pm; LSC Safe Sport Chairs Workshop; The focus of this workshop will be on local level engagement. We are in the process of developing a promotional tool kit that is intended to be low cost and easily replicable for LSCs. We will walk through the logistics of how to best distribute the materials in this tools kit along with talking points and follow up needs. Also covered in this workshop will be 1) June goals progress reports; 2) Scenario based “Crucial Moments” discussion.

Wednesday, September 30, 5-7pm; Safe Sport Committee Business Meeting

Thursday, October 1, 1-2:30; LGBTQ Athletes: Promoting Equal Access, Safety and Support (Presented by Chris Downs); Chris Downs of The Downs Group will lead a dynamic workshop focused on inclusion and support for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth. Ways to address homophobia, LGBTQ language, stereotypes, and “coming out” issues will be highlighted.

Friday, October 2, 1:30-3pm; Handling a Safe Sport Complaint: Choose Your Own Adventure: You’re the club’s Board President. You check your email before bed one night to find a serious bullying complaint. What now? This interactive workshop will have participants up and moving around the room as they navigate effective (and ineffective!) complaints management.


Transgender Guidelines Last newsletter we posted a great article from the Washington Post about Harvard athlete Schuyler Bailar, the first openly transgender collegiate swimmer in U.S. history. USA Swimming has guidelines to help teams best address having an athlete who is transgender on the team. Inclusion is the key! You can find the guidelines at www.usaswimming.org/protect under Fill My Club’s Tool Kit.


Parent Meeting Webinar! On Wednesday, August 12 we held a webinar discussing best practices to hosting a parent meeting and how to include discussion about Safe Sport in that meeting. Communication is key especially when talking about Safe Sport and this webinar will give you ways to make this easier. The webinar will soon be available here

SwimStaffSelect! USA Swimming proudly offers a free online tool that is now available to all USA Swimming clubs to help assist in their hiring of staff. SwimStaffSelect is a web based application that allows teams to create position descriptions, job postings, applications, reference checking scripts, background checks, certification verifications and interview scripts online. The software works to help clubs screen applicants for staff and volunteer positions, plus communicate with applicants and review applications. This tool is a great way to further assist clubs in creating a positive sport environment for their coaches and athletes. You can access the tool at www.swimstaffselect.org 

Free online anti-bullying course! At the beginning of July, Safe Sport launched a new online course to help parents and coaches identify and address bullying behaviors. Bullying behaviors can lead to a negative team environment if not handled properly and quickly. You can access the training at www.usaswimming.org/protect or by going here.

Safe Sport Awareness

Tabling Kit! Providing the opportunity to spark discussion about Safe Sport is very important. By having a simple conversation you can spark interest and awareness in the topic of Safe Sport and healthy team culture. Safe Sport staff see an opportunity to do this at local meets by hosting a Safe Sport table. We have put together a simple tabling kit which includes a table cloth, stickers and parent flyers all which offer the opportunity for education and conversation. Please contact Maggie Vail atmvail@usaswimming.org if you are interested in further details about how to put together a kit for your LSC. 

Indiana Swimming Safe Sport Week! Kudos go out to Indiana Swimming who have created a great way to show that athlete safety is at the top of their priority list. Indiana Swimming is encouraging all of their clubs to take part in their Safe Sport Week to help provide a positive environment for their swimmers. Their Safe Sport Week will run from October 10- October 17 and will have emphasis on members taking part in USA Swimming’s online training and reviewing and understanding their club’s policies to address bullying, electronic communication and team travel. This is such a great initiative! Great job Indiana Swimming!

Please continue to follow us on Twitter @SwimSafeSport and on Facebook at USA Swimming Safe Sport

You can find previous Newsletters here.