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The aims of the EFL Safeguarding Strategy and policies are to:

Develop a positive and pro-active approach to safeguarding in order to best protect all children, young people and adults at risk who play football or engage in associated activities, enabling them to participate and achieve in an enjoyable and safe environment.

  • Facilitate the provision of a range of safeguarding awareness and child protection training for Member Clubs in conjunction with, and supported by, The FA, The Premiere League, the NSPCC and CPSU and in line with guidance from Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCBs).

  • Demonstrate best practice in the area of safeguarding the welfare of all children, young people and adults at risk engaged in activities delivered and supported by EFL and Member Clubs.

  • Promote ethical work with children, young people and adults at risk.

  • Support Member Clubs to work towards achieving the EFL approved Safeguarding Operating Standards.

The key principles underpinning our Policies are that:

  • The welfare of children, young people and adults at risk is, and must always be, the paramount consideration.

  • All children, young people and adults at risk have a right to be protected from all forms of abuse and discrimination regardless of their age, sex, gender reassignment, ability or disability, race, nationality or racial origin, religion or belief, culture, language, heritage or sexual orientation.

  • All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately.

  • Working in partnership with children, young people, adults at risk and their parents/carers is an essential element of our work.

EFL is committed to working together with Children’s Services Departments, the Police and Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCB’s) in accordance with their procedures and in line with the most recent HM Government guidance - Working Together to Safeguard Children. In addition EFL is committed to working together with agencies within football to create a safer environment in which all can enjoy the game.

Where EFL believes, or is informed from a member club that circumstances exist which may harm any child(ren), young person(s), or adults at risk, or poses or may pose a risk of harm to them, EFL may refer the matter to The F.A. Case Management Team for investigation and action in accordance with the appropriate F.A. Safeguarding Children Regulations and Disciplinary Procedures or, if appropriate, to a statutory agency such as the Police, LADO or Children’s Services Department for further investigation.

Whilst EFL will refer matters of concern relating to risk or harm or acts of abuse towards children, young people or adults at risk to the appropriate authorities, it does not investigate disclosures. It does however, have a role in responding to and may review general complaints and/or complaints of poor practice. EFL will work together with agencies both inside and outside football, as appropriate, in order to respond to or refer on complaints in line with EFL Complaints Procedure.

EFL’s arrangements in fulfilling its commitment to safeguarding children, young people and adults at risk include:

1. The Chief Executive is the Senior Manager with responsibility for safeguarding.

  • The Safeguarding Manager is the designated person within EFL. The Safeguarding Manager must be informed of all concerns and disclosures within our member Clubs which require referral to statutory authorities. When a Member Club fails to make timely and appropriate referrals to the relevant authorities/statutory agencies then the Safeguarding Manager will do so on their behalf.

2. The production of an organisational Safeguarding strategy and standards which all member clubs will be monitored against in order to ensure a Culture of Vigilance in respect of our safeguarding responsibilities within all our Member Clubs.

3. EFL has in place responsible recruitment processes which include:-

  • Statements in job adverts, in job descriptions and contracts as to the organisation’s commitment to safeguarding for those whose role involves work with or on behalf of children

  • Job descriptions

  • Interviews

  • Criminal Records Checks (CRC) via the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) for those working with children, young people or vulnerable persons at vetting levels as advised by The FA (the NGB) taking account of the Protection of Freedoms Act (2012)

  • The taking up of two written references

  • EFL also outlines its commitments and requirements to all partner organisations and commissioned service providers

4. EFL works with The FA to develop overarching key principles for safeguarding. Specific EFL policies procedures and guidance documents are developed to meet the particular requirements of the professional game.

5. EFL provides in-house training for all staff on identifying and reporting concerns in respect of safeguarding.

6. EFL is committed to ongoing safeguarding training and development, appropriate to the role of the employee and the level of their involvement with children, young people and adults at risk.

7. EFL is committed to the sharing of information to protect children, young people and adults at risk, in line with Working Together.

8. In addition to our safeguarding policies, strategy and standards, EFL promotes a number of initiatives which seek to address and encourage young people’s and families’ enjoyment as spectators including the “Fans of the Future”; “Enjoy the Match” campaigns; “Kids & Girls Cup Competition” and the “Family Excellence Awards”.

For further information contact:

Alex Richards EFL: Safeguarding Manager
Tel: 01772 325940; Email:


Data Protection

The EFL complies with The Data Protection Act 1998 and all other relevant legislation.  All personal data held following communication with the Supporter Services Department is only used for the purpose it is collected and is kept for as short a time as possible. The EFL is committed to the safe hand ling, use, storage, retention and disposal of personal data and a written policy on this is available.