Safeguarding in Open Age Football

We are constantly working to make football in our county a safe and enjoyable experience for all.

At the start of 2019 The FA has contacted open-age adult football clubs and leagues across the country to support them in fully understanding their safeguarding responsibilities for under 18's, and adults in disability teams.

This means that every open-age adult club with active players aged 16 or 17 should know that they are not exposed to a coach or manager who is ‘barred from working with children’. The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS), is an agency delivering the government's requirements for vetting checks for those working with under-18s and they have declared that if a team has or is likely to have one or more 16/17-year-old in an adult football team, and if the time that the coaches and managers work with these children exceeds more than three days in any 30 day period, then this is deemed as 'regulated activity'. This requires the eligible coaches and managers working with these under-18s to undertake the requisite DBS Check.

To ensure this is the case we strongly recommend that our clubs check that those people in eligible roles within their club hold an in-date FA accepted Enhanced DBS Check with a check of the Children’s Barred list.

If a club has or is likely to have any 16 or 17 year olds involved in open-aged football (e.g adult clubs with a youth section). We would strongly suggest that they follow the best practice of ensuring that at least 1 member of the coaching staff working with their teams holds a valid FA DBS Check.

If clubs with Open Age teams do not have a Welfare Officer and have or are likely to have 16/17 year olds then we also suggest that you train a Club Welfare Officer and adopt safeguarding policies and procedures to safeguard those young people who are under 18. 

We're here to help...

Northamptonshire FA are committed to creating safe and enjoyable football for all. We're here to support all of our adult clubs and leagues to ensure these requirements are met and can help you with any questions you may have in terms of safeguarding.

The FA and Northamptonshire FA are beginning a proactive drive to help support clubs to understand and ensure they are embracing their responsibilities for safeguarding 16/17 year old players. If you have any questions or want any support with this process please contact our Designated Safeguarding Officer on or call 07535640452.

download - know your rights in football

 download open age safeguarding responsibilities - clubs letter

download open age safeguarding RESPONSIBILITIES - leagues letter