Child Welfare and Protection
The Association and its sister organisations recently launched (September 2015) online version of Our Games - Our Code, the joint Code of Best Practice in Youth Sport. This Code has been agreed between the GAA, the Ladies Gaelic Football Association, the Camogie Association, GAA Handball Ireland and the Rounders Council of Ireland.
The Code replaces all previous Codes and is a mandatory Code of Best Practice for all Gaelic Games Associations in our work with underage players. It is a comprehensive good practice guidance publication and we are anxious that as many players, coaches, parents and other Club personnel have immediate access to its contents.
The Code is also available in disc format (not printed) form the National Children's Office. For more information or a disc, please contact the GAA National Children's Officer, Gearóid Ó Maoilmhichíl at 01-8363222 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Gaelic Athletic Association is committed to creating and maintaining the safest possible environment for all young people who wish to participate in our Gaelic Games and activities. We will take all practicable steps to protect them from discernable forms of abuse - from harm, discrimination or degrading treatment and shall respect their rights, wishes and feelings.
We do this by:
- Recognising that all children have the right to be protected from harm.
- Ensuring that all of our coaches and volunteers are carefully recruited and selected and that they accept responsibility for ensuring the wellbeing of children in their care.
- Responding swiftly and appropriately to protect the welfare of children who participate in our games and related activities.
- Providing parents and children with the opportunity to voice any concerns that they may have.
- Appointing Children’s Officers in each of our Clubs and at County Board level.
- Appointing a National Children’s Officer to oversee the implementation of good child protection and welfare practices within the Association.
- Appointing a Designated Person in each Club and County who will liaise with the statutory authorities as appropriate.
- Appointing a National Designated Person to assist in the processing of child protection and welfare matters.
- Ensuring that all allegations of abuse of young people are confidentially dealt with in accordance with the Association's Guidelines for Dealing with Allegations of Abuse (Fourth Edition 2009) and with statutory guidelines and relevant legislation.
- Reviewing the effectiveness of our Child Protection procedures and policies on an ongoing basis. Ensuring that members, coaches, team mentors, administrators, parents/guardians and spectators sign up to and adhere to our Code of Behaviour.
Please note the link below is to the first edition of Our Games Our Code - the Code of Best Practice in Youth Sport. This Code is under review with our statutory partners and will be re-issued shortly containing an amended Code of Behaviour (Underage) and relevant contact details for reporting child welfare concerns to Tusla and Social Care (HSC) Trusts Gateway Services personnel. Updated links to the new Code of Behaviour (Underage) and to Tusla and Social Care (HSC) Trusts Gateway Services personnel are currently available elsewhere on this website in the Child Welfare and Protection Section.