Abuse, Harassment and Bullying

Who is Responsible for Safety?

Each association, team, parent, volunteer and staff member is expected to take all reasonable steps to safeguard the welfare of participants – especially young participants – and protect them from any form of violence. There is a shared responsibility with parents and guardians to nurture the physical and emotional well-being of our players.



Abuse is any form of physical, emotional and/or sexual mistreatment, or lack of care which causes physical injury or emotional damages to a child, whether done in person or through technology, by a person in a position of power. Abuse is a PROTECTION issue for the victim. In Alberta, a person is considered a child up to the age of 18 years. For more information on abuse please refer to Service Alberta (http://www.servicealberta.ca/).



Bullying is repeated, unwanted aggressive behavior by one or more individuals towards another. Bullying involves an observed or perceived power imbalance, and can result in physical, social or academic harm or distress for the targeted individual. Bullying is typically behavior that is repeated. A bully is usually someone both you and your child know and who misuses his/her power over your child. This may be a peer, a young person, or an adult. A child is most vulnerable when s/he is alone with another person, or in a group setting where there is inadequate supervision.



Harassment is offensive behaviour – emotional, physical, and/or sexual – that involves discrimination against a person because of their race, national or ethnic origin, age, colour, religion, family status, sexual orientation, sex/gender, disability, marital status, or pardoned conviction. It is conduct that is disrespectful, insulting, ­intimidating, humiliating, offensive or physically harmful. Harassment is a HUMAN RIGHTS violation. Harassment may be a single event or a pattern of mistreatment. Harassment occurs when someone attempts to negatively control, influence or embarrass another person or group based on a prohibited ground of discrimination. Examples include displays of favouritism, subtle put downs or ostracism. Dealing with harassment can sometimes be difficult as what is viewed as harassment by one person may be viewed as a “joke” by another person. It is the impact of the behaviour on the victim that is the most critical issue, not the intention of the person who harasses.


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