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Discipline and Grievance Policy
All members of Basingstoke Netball League (BNL) have a responsibility to ensure that they conduct themselves in such a manner as to not bring themselves, the sport of Netball, their club or BNL into disrepute.

This discipline and grievance policy applies to all clubs within BNL It shall be considered to apply to any member at any time during the course of their attendance at Russell Howard or any other venue used by BNL, whether the member be in attendance at such venue as a player, team official, netball official or spectator.

It is the intention of BNL to ensure that every member is provided with a fair, non-discriminatory and consistent method of dealing with issues of conduct and behaviour.

Members should report any relevant case immediately, in writing, to the committee. Formal disciplinary procedures will not be implemented automatically. The committee´s main consideration shall be whether the alleged offence has any implications on the member or impact on other members and whether the alleged offence is one that makes the member unsuitable for membership to BNL.

1. Disciplinary and Grievance Sub Committee

Any member/team/club affiliated to BNL, or any person in whatever capacity with an issue of conduct or behaviour concerning a member/team/club affiliated to BNL, may lodge a complaint/grievance, in writing to the committee.

Once in receipt of such a complaint, and in accordance with the provision set out in section 3, the Chairperson will contact all parties concerned and request a written representation of their version of events.

Under the Data Protection Act, the member/team/club to whom the alleged complaint is against, will have the right to see the contents of such a complaint in order that they can respond in writing to the Chairperson.

The Chairperson will collate all such written representations and present them to the committee, who will convene a Disciplinary Sub Committee, which will consist of 3 affiliated members from EN, none of whom will have any relationship, which the committee might deem to constitute a conflict of interest to the parties involved in the proceedings.

This 3 person Sub Committee will convene and take action under the disciplinary procedures. Under normal operating circumstances the selection by the committee of the 3 members will take place within a reasonable timescale (up to 4 weeks) of receipt of a complaint/grievance.

2.Member’s Right to have Representation

BNL respects the right of its members to request and be accompanied by a representative, such as another team member, friend, family member of their reasonable choosing.

In the case of a member under the age of 16 the committee will insist on the member being accompanied by a parent, carer or legal guardian.

If such a representative is to accompany a member, the member must advise the Disciplinary Sub Committee of the persons name and status in relation to both the member and the proceedings.

3. Procedure

BNL Discipline and Grievance Policy follows a clearly follows a staged process:

1)Fact finding stage
3)Sub Committee adjournment to review the facts and interview(s)
4)Sub Committee decision
5)Advising the member in writing of the outcome reached
6)Appeal opportunity/process
7)Monitoring of the members future conduct and behaviour

Fact Finding Stage
Where a complaint is brought before the committee or it is considered that a possible breach of BNL standards of conduct and behaviour may have occurred an initial fact finding investigation will be undertaken.

The committee will appoint a 3 person Disciplinary Sub Committee, as defined in section 1 to undertake this role.

The selection of the Disciplinary Sub Committee will be based on their status in relation to the parties bringing the complaint, and that they have the skills required to undertake the investigation.

The purpose of the Fact Finding stage of the procedure is to determine the facts surrounding the alleged misconduct. The Disciplinary Sub Committee will review the information collated by the Chairperson and may request additional written statements from all parties concerned as well as from any neutral/substantiating witnesses.

In cases of alleged gross misconduct consideration will be given to temporarily suspending a member whilst investigations are carried out. The member and their club secretary will be advised of any decision in writing

Disciplinary Interview
If the Disciplinary Sub Committee findings at the fact Finding stage lead them to decide that action is necessary under the disciplinary and grievance policy they will arrange to conduct an interview with the parties involved in the complaint.

The disciplinary interviews follow the same pattern, with each party being called in turn, to present evidence of events to the Disciplinary Sub Committee. The Sub committee will then call any neutral or substantiating witnesses before adjourning to consider their findings.

Disciplinary interviews will be arranged at a neutral venue and the Disciplinary Sub Committee will endeavour, where possible, to ensure that the time and place are suitable to all parties concerned. Attendance at a disciplinary interview is compulsory and refusal to attend will result in the member/team/club being suspended/banned in their absence with no re-address

BNL Committee will be responsible for advising the parties and witnesses in writing of this meeting together including the disciplinary policy.

This formal notification will include advising the member of the following:

1.That a disciplinary interview has been arranged.
2.A brief outline of the reasons for the disciplinary interview.
3.When and where the disciplinary interview will take place.
4.The names of the 3 person Disciplinary Sub Committee and who else has been requested to attend and the capacity in which they are attending.
5.That he/she has the right to be accompanied by a representative of their reasonable choice.
6.Of possible outcomes of the disciplinary interview.

Members will be given at least 2 weeks notice of their requirement to attend a disciplinary interview.

Sub Committee Adjournment to Review the Facts and Interviews

After the disciplinary interviews the Disciplinary Sub Committee shall take time to consider all the facts presented at both the fact-finding stage and the interviews before reaching decision.

Sub Committee Decision

The Disciplinary Sub Committee are selected and fully supported by BNL committee. They have been given the authority to conduct the disciplinary process and impose any of the following actions:

1.No further action.
2.A verbal warning.
3.A written warning.
4.A final written warning (note this action can be taken without a previous verbal or written warning having been issued).
5.Suspension of the member/team/club from BNL for a defined period.
6.Complete ban of member/team/club from BNL.

Their decision will also take into account whether the member/team/club conduct/behaviour is found to constitute misconduct or gross misconduct and whether there are current warnings in existence and the seriousness of the offence being considered. Any warnings being verbal or written will have a date period attached to them.

Advising the Member in writing of the Outcome Reached

The Chairperson will normally advise the member and their club/team secretary of the outcome of the disciplinary interview within 2 weeks of the date of the last interview.

In all cases, including a verbal warning, the member and their team/club secretary will receive written confirmation from the Chairperson. This will advise the member/team/club of the disciplinary action and the reason for it. In addition the member will be warned that any further breach of the same incident/behaviour could result in further disciplinary action.

The written confirmation will also remind the member/team/club of their right of appeal.

In the case of suspension, the written confirmation will include the start and end date of the suspension.

In the case of a complete ban, the written confirmation will state the date on which the ban will take effect.

Appeals Process

A member/team/club has a right of appeal against the decision reached by the Disciplinary Sub Committee if they believe that:

1.Not all the facts were available at the time the Disciplinary Sub Committee reached their decision.
2.The Disciplinary Sub Committee did not apply the disciplinary procedure correctly.

A member/team/club that wishes to appeal against a decision must advise the Chairperson in writing, stating their reason(s), for appeal within 7 days of the date they were informed of the Disciplinary Sub Committee decision.

A 3 person Appeals Committee will hear an appeal, where possible, within 2 weeks of the Chairperson receiving notification of the appeal. The Appeals Committee will consist of persons who had no part in the original decision reached but must be affiliated to EN and will be appointed by the BNL committee.

After the appeal hearing the Appeals Committee will revoke, reduce or uphold the decision reached by the Disciplinary Sub Committee.

This decision will be final. The result of the appeal will be confirmed in writing, within 7 days by the Appeals Committee to the BNL committee and the member/team/club involved.

In any appeal against a decision made by the Disciplinary Sub committee, the decision will not take effect until the appeal has been heard and determined by the Appeal Committee.

Monitoring of the Members Future Conduct and Behaviour

After 12 months, or any other such period that the Disciplinary Sub Committee deems to be reasonable, the warning will normally be disregarded for disciplinary purposes if sufficient improvement in conduct has occurred.

The member/team/club will be advised accordingly in writing.

If a warning is current and sufficient improvement has not occurred, further disciplinary action will normally be implemented.

Examples of Misconduct

The following are examples of issues covered by this policy and which may lead to disciplinary action.

Misconduct occurs when conduct does not reach the required standard expected by BNL. In particular when a member/team/club:

Brings the game into disrepute
Shows unbefitting conduct towards other players
Shows unbefitting conduct towards the umpire
Not adhering to the code of conduct for players
Not adhering to the code of conduct for umpires
Not adhering to the code of conduct for officials.

This list is not exhaustive and other issues may be dealt with under the heading of ‘misconduct’.

Examples of Gross Misconduct

The following are examples of issues covered by this policy and which may lead to disciplinary action.

Gross misconduct occurs when conduct does not reach the required standards expected by BNL of its members/teams/clubs.

Where the items of misconduct, identified above, are serious then gross misconduct can apply.
Uses unsuitable language
Acts of discrimination
Violent or threatening conduct
Seriously contravenes the rules of the game
Acts of dishonesty
Shows any use of illegal drugs
Makes any false declarations

This list is not exhaustive and other issues may be dealt with under the heading of ‘gross misconduct’.