Risk Management Policy

Spindletop Youth Soccer Association Risk Management Policy


1.       Risk Management Overview


A.      What is Risk Management?

Risk Management is a method for identifying risks in all areas, and developing and implementing a plan to protect an organization and prevent loss. An effective Risk Management program consists of these four basic steps:

1)      Assess, identify, analyze, and prioritize potential risks.

2)      Select methods to prevent loss.

3)      Implement the best methods.

4)      Monitor the results and revise as necessary.


B.      Authority:

Section 2 of US Youth Soccer Bylaw 214 requires US Youth Soccer, Spindletop Youth Soccer and all of its other state associations to establish and monitor a Risk Management Program within its jurisdiction. That program must include, at a minimum:

1)      The use of employment/disclosure statements for all volunteers, employees, coaches, and program administrators.

2)      Identification of a Risk Management Coordinator and an alternate for the organization.


C.      Risk Management Policy Statement:

Spindletop Youth Soccer is committed to protecting its human, financial, and goodwill assets and resources through the practice of effective Risk Management. The Spindletop Youth Soccer Board of Directors and staff are dedicated to safeguarding the safety and dignity of its paid and volunteer staff, its clients, and anyone who has contact with the organization. To this end, the board will ensure that the Spindletop Youth Soccer has a Risk Management Plan for the organization that is reviewed and updated on an annual basis.


D.      Purpose of Risk Management Plan:

The purpose of the Spindletop Youth Soccer Risk Management Plan is to communicate methods of minimizing risk to players, parents, volunteers, paid personnel, clubs and leagues. This plan does not provide professional legal or tax advice and may not be relied upon for that purpose. While this program may require time and effort, there is no higher priority than the protection of the soccer players and volunteers within our organization.


E.       Procedure for Risk Management Coordinator:

The Risk Management Coordinator shall be appointed by the Spindletop Youth Soccer President with the advice and consent of the Spindletop Youth Soccer Board of Directors.


F.       Responsibilities of Risk Management Coordinator:

1)      Oversee the administration of the background checks.

2)      Develop and maintain policy and procedures on Risk Management for Spindletop Youth Soccer.

3)      Insure all affiliate and allied member organizations appoint a Risk Management Director.

4)      Insure the Risk Management Director for all affiliate and allied member organizations completes background checks for all individuals in his/her club or league required by these rules.

5)      Insure the Risk Management Director for all affiliate and allied member organizations submit STYSA Goal Post Inspection Reports and STYSA Certificate of Insurance Request Forms prior to the start of the Fall Soccer Season.

6)      Research materials relevant to Risk Management for affiliate and allied member organizations.

7)      Distribute at minimum, on an annual basis, appropriate educational material regarding the Spindletop Youth Soccer Risk Management Plan.


G.     Procedure for Risk Management Director:

The Risk Management Director shall be appointed by the Club President with the advice and consent of the Club Board of Directors.


H.      Responsibilities of Risk Management Director:

1)      Oversee the administration of the background checks.

2)      Maintain and uphold policy and procedures on Risk Management set forth by Spindletop Youth Soccer.

3)      Complete and submit STYSA Goal Post Inspection Reports and STYSA Certificate of Insurance Request Forms to Spindletop Youth Soccer Risk Management Coordinator prior to the start of the Fall Soccer Season.


2.       Procedures for Background Checks


A.      The Risk Management Director shall insure that each person in his/her organization required by these rules, complete a Disclosure Form. This includes, but is not limited to:

1)      Director of Coaches and any paid staff.

2)      All coaches, assistant coaches and trainers.

3)      All team managers.

4)      Members of Board of Directors.

5)      Any other individual having on-going contact with children.


B.      Ensure that all appropriate individuals complete a background check form with the following mandatory fields:

1)      First Name

2)      Last Name

3)      Date of Birth

4)      Social Security Number

5)      Current Street Address

6)      City

7)      State

8)      Zip


C.      The Risk Management Director shall verify the above information by examining a governmental issued picture identification or any other document necessary with such information on it.


D.      Spindletop Youth Soccer understands that it is unlawful for any person to disclose, or use, any information concerning persons revealing personal information, including social security numbers and driver’s license numbers and information  contained in the registration form, information which may directly or indirectly derive from these forms. Spindletop Youth Soccer understands that all information and data processing systems to which one is given access is only to be used for the conduct of activities authorized by the Risk Management Program of STYSA. Furthermore, the use of these resources must be conducted according to the policies, standards, and procedures instituted by STYSA. Spindletop Youth Soccer understands that unauthorized use of information resources constitutes a violation of State and Federal laws. In addition, Spindletop Youth Soccer understands that unlawful disclosure of information obtained as a result of volunteer work or employment will result in possible Discipline and Protest misconduct action or immediate dismissal, as well as possible criminal and civil actions being levied.


3.       Reporting Abuse


A.      Procedures for Reporting Abuse or Suspected Abuse:

1)      Submit a written report to the Risk Management Director.

2)      The Risk Management Director will report the information to authorities.


B.      Club spokesman shall keep in mind that information given to or obtained by news media may have a bearing on the club’s liability, so careful judgment shall be exercised.


C.      Any person accused of sexual or physical abuse may be asked to resign voluntarily or may be suspended by the board until the matter is resolved. Regardless of criminal or civil guilt in the alleged abuse, the continued presence of the person could be detrimental to the reputation of the organization and could be harmful to the participants. A person who is accused but later cleared of charges, may apply to be reinstated to his/her former position.


4.       Financial Guidelines


A.      The Treasurer of a youth soccer organization is responsible for the oversight and implementation of all accounting policies and procedures as set forth by the Board of Directors. Duties include:

1)      Prepare or review monthly financial statements and present them to the finance committee or Board of Directors.

2)      Prepare or oversee the preparation of the annual budget and present the budget to the finance committee or Board of Directors.

3)      Prepare or oversee the timely preparation of all required tax filings.

4)      Responsible for the identifying the segregation of financial duties.


B.      Duties should be segregated so that no one person has the ability to initiate, execute, record, and reconcile a transaction from beginning to end.

1)      A person who prepares checks should not have the duty of depositing cash receipts.

2)      A person other than the check preparer should receive the bank statements and images or cancelled checks and reconcile the account.

3)      Two signatures should be required on checks over a certain amount. The amount should be determined by the Board of Directors.

4)      Internal controls should be put into place to help prevent against fraud.

5)      Physical access to cash and unissued checks should be restricted to authorized personnel.

6)      Checks and bank transfers should be prepared only by authorized and documented transactions by authorized personnel.

7)      All purchases should require a purchase order. A copy of the purchase order should be sent to the Treasurer.


C.       Cash generated from concessions or like events:

1)      Cash should be counted in the presence of another person.

2)      Cash should be placed in an envelope with the currency count on the outside

3)      The person verifying should initial the cash count.

4)      A cash receipt should be sent to the Treasurer noting the amount of cash collected.

5)      The cash should then be forwarded to the person designated as the depositor of cash receipts.


D.      Cash generated during the normal course of business:

1)      All cash receipts should be logged.

2)      A receipt should be given to the payee at the time of receipt.


E.       The use of credit cards is typical inn many not-for-profit organizations. The following controls should be put into place to prevent unauthorized use:

1)      Cards should be issued to a limited number of people in the organization.

2)      The limit on these cards should be minimal.

3)      Receipts should be turned in to the Treasurer along with an expense report that documents the nature of the expenditure.

4)      Personal use of credit cards issued should be prohibited.

5)      The credit card statement should be sent directly to the Treasurer for examination and reconciliation and payment.


F.        A budget should be prepared annually (before the beginning of the fiscal year) by the Treasurer. The budget should be presented to the Board of Directors by the Treasurer. Once approved, the budget should be used to determine the reasonableness of disbursements. If a request for disbursement is made that exceeds the budget, approval from the Board of Directors should be obtained. The Board should determine to what extent a budget can be modified without Board approval.


G.     The following reports should be presented to the Board of Directors on a monthly basis:

1)      Balance Sheet – this is a snapshot of the financial position of the organization.

2)      Income Statement – this is the total revenues and expenses the organization has incurred on a monthly basis.

3)      Budget to Actual Report – this will show variaces of actul revenues/expenses to the budget. Any significant variance should be explained.

4)      Cash Disbursement Journal or Check Register – this lists each check written during the period.

5)      Accounts Payable – this lists all bills that the organization owes.

6)      Accounts Receivable – this shows all clients/customers amounts outstanding and the age of the accounts.


H.       Large youth soccer organizations should consider having an annual audit of their financial statements performed by an independent CPA. Smaller organizations should have their records audited internally by a committee which does not include any persons having accounting functions in the organization. A report of findings should be issued which details discrepancies from established policies and procedures.


I.        Recommendation for length of time to keep financial records, including tax forms, bank statements, etc., is seven years.


5.       Prevention – Child Abuse


A.      The four types of child abuse:

1)      Physical abuse is any non-accidental injury to a child. It is often caused by an action or omission of a caregiver. Injuries include bruises, welts, cuts, fractures, burns or internal injuries. Physical abuse can be one or two isolated incidents or it can occur over a prolonged period of time.

2)      Emotional abuse includes all acts that result in the child’s sense of “self” being seriously impaired. This type of behavior can include demeaning remarks, rejecting the child, ignoring or isolating the child, name calling, or telling the child that he is not a good person or athlete.

3)      Sexual abuse is any sexual activity between a child and an adult, or between children when an unequal distribution of power exist (such as when one is significantly older or physically larger than the other).

4)      Neglect occurs when a caregiver fails to provide basic needs such as adequate food, sleep, safety, supervision, clothing, or medical treatment.


B.      Typically, there is a relationship where the adult has authority over the player. These guidelines recognize that the lines of authority and separation between adults and players must be acknowledged and respected. These guidelines provide that protection while setting levels of acceptable conduct for adults.

1)      Physical Contact – physical contact should be limited to that necessary and appropriate to teach a skill, treat an injury, or console or congratulate a player. Physical intimidation, physical punishment, or threatening a player with physical harm is not appropriate behavior. However, reasonably requiring players to do push-ups or running for misbehavior would not likely be considered inappropriate.

2)      Social Contact – adults should not spend time or socialize alone with players except at games, practices, or team functions. Pulling players to the side for additional instruction in plain view of the remainder of the team would be an exception to this rule. Adults should avoid instances such as driving alone with a non-family player. However, in the event that a player remains on a field waiting for transportation, the adult should wait with the player on the field or in the parking lot (weather permitting) to guarantee the player’s safety and well being.

3)      Verbal Contact – adults should model good communication skills. Offensive or insulting language by adults or players is unacceptable. Language that is denigrating in nature, content, or tone or refers to one’s gender, race, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or religion is unacceptable. Inappropriate language targeting officials, opponents, or spectators may be grounds for removal from a game or the premises or both.

4)      Violations of these guidelines by adults or players will subject them to disciplinary actions, including but not limited to, warnings, sanctions, suspensions or release by their club and/or Spindletop Youth Soccer. Any person witnessing a violation of these guidelines should report the incident to their club’s Risk Management Director.

5)      We recommend that every activity sponsored by our program put a Buddy System in place. Each youth participant should be assigned a buddy during sponsored activities. No child should go anywhere – to the restrooms, locker rooms or other location – without his or her buddy.

6)      To further protect our youth participants, as well as our coaches and volunteers, we strongly advise that no adult person allow him/herself to be alone with a child (other than their own) or with any group of children during sponsored activities. In particular, we recommend that coaches or other adult members of this organization:

a)      Do not drive alone with a child participant in the car.

b)      Do not take a child alone to the restroom, locker room or other private room.

c)       Provide one-on-one training or individual coaching with the assistance of another adult or the child’s Buddy.

d)      If you must have a private conversation with a youth participant, do it within view of others, on the field, instead of in a private office.

e)      Coaches and other adult members of this organization should not socialize individually with the participant outside of sponsored activities.

7)      We recommend that for any sponsored activity, the ratio of adults to youth participants be 1:8, one or more adults for every eight children, with a minimum of two adults for every activity.


6.       Safety – Facilities


A.      A field and ground maintenance program should include routine activities such as cutting the grass and striping fields. Safety issues include securing the goals (covered in the next section) and a regular inspection of all areas where occupants may walk or run to locate and remove trip and fall hazards. Particular attention should be focused on the fields, walkways from the parking area to the fields, player bench areas, spectator areas including the concession stand and restrooms. Recommended safeguards for fields and grounds include:

1)      Holes discovered during the inspection must be filled or covered; or a warning sign and barrier must be installed over the hole until permanent repairs can be made.

2)      Sprinkler heads should be recessed and secured to eliminate trip/fall hazards.

3)      Mowing and fertilization limited to times when the complex is not in use.

4)      If stairs are present, secure handrails should be provided.

5)      Bleachers should be secured and free from sharp edges.

6)      Tables, chairs and benches in the concession stand and at the player bench area must be sturdy and free from sharp edges including splinters.


B.      Injuries and fatalities occur each year involving soccer goals. The crossbars can injure or kill a youth player if the goal tips over or the cross bar comes loose. Goals are constructed from a variety of heavy materials including metal, aluminum, plastic and other materials. The injuries typically occur because goals are not secured to the ground, children hang on the crossbar, or strong winds cause the goal to tip over. In many cases these events occur outside of normal play either during practice or warm-up sessions; or when the complex is “closed”. Many complexes remain open to the public when games and practice are not in  and play

1)      Secure anchor or counterweight movable soccer goals at ALL times.

2)      Secure goal to the ground (preferably at the rear of the goal), making sure the anchors are flush with the ground and clearly visible.

3)      Moveable soccer goals should only be used on level (flat) fields.

4)      Eliminate homemade goals. Do not manufacture or design your own goalposts.

5)      Periodically inspect for structural integrity and proper connecting hardware before every use. Replace damaged or missing parts or fasteners immediately.

6)      Always stand near the rear or side of the goal when moving it, NEVER to the front and allow adequate manpower to move goals of varied sizes and weights.

7)      Advise maintenance and coaches to secure goals after moving them.

8)      Remove and secure from unauthorized access, goals that are no longer in use.

9)      Remove nets when goals are not in use.

10)   Anchor or chain one goal to another, to itself in a folded down position, to nearby fence posts or any other similar, sturdy fixture when not in use, or at the least secure them to the ground and place a “Do Not Use Without Approval” sign.

11)   Coaches should always conduct a visual inspection of goals to all scheduled activities.

12)   Referees MUST conduct a visual inspection of goals prior to every game.

13)   Educate players and adults about the dangers associated with soccer goals.

14)   Adults should supervise and not allow hanging or climbing on a soccer goal or soccer net.

15)   Ensure safety/warning labels are clearly visible (placed under the crossbar and on the sides of the down-posts at eye level).

16)   Do not own goal posts on public property. Donate funds to the property owner for purchase of goals. Have written documentation of this transaction. Perform periodic surveys of all locations to determine who owns the goals where teams practice and play.


C.      Parking lots are a significant source of risk for any youth soccer club. Accidents that occur include trips and falls, motor vehicle/motor vehicle accidents and motor vehicle/pedestrian accidents. Recommended safeguards for parking lots include:

1)      Maintain a smooth surface free from holes and other trip/fall hazards.

2)      Maintain proper drainage to minimize puddles of standing water.

3)      Provide a clearly marked path of travel for pedestrians with pedestrian warning signs as needed,

4)      Post speed limit signs as needed.

5)      Provide adequate lighting if complex is used after daylight hours.


D.      Mobile equipment is another risk exposure for youth soccer clubs. Specifically, golf carts, lawn mowers and tractors are found at many soccer complexes. If used properly this equipment is safe; however, if operated by inappropriate people or at inappropriate times, mobile equipment can cause injuries to the driver, passenger and pedestrians at the complex. Recommended safeguards for mobile equipment include:

1)      Qualified drivers/users of this equipment; qualifications should include valid driver’s license, formal training on each device used, and a history of safe use with the device.

2)      Maintenance schedule for all mobile equipment to assure all safety devices, brakes, shut-off switches, etc. are fully functional.


E.       Signs posting facility regulations and information can minimize risk in two ways: by posting the appropriate warning, individuals using the complex will be forewarned of facility rules and regulations and may avoid risk by adhering to said warnings.


From an insurance perspective, warning signs may do little to stop someone from participating in a specific activity, but they can go a long way in defending the club should an injured party alleging negligence file a claim or lawsuit. Facility rules and regulations signage should include:

1)      No trespassing.

2)      No alcohol.

3)      No smoking.

4)      No pets.

5)      Hours of operation.

6)      Code of conduct including language that anyone who violates the rules can be invited to leave the complex.

7)      Parking lot speed limit and pedestrian crossing signs.

8)      Employees and volunteers working the concession stand must wash their hands before coming on duty and after any breaks.

9)      Emergency contact list with phone numbers for Police Department, Fire Department, Medical Ambulance Service, Risk Management Director and/or other appropriate Board Member.


F.       Concession stands have built in risk exposure to those serving the food and those purchasing the food. Risks include volunteer injuries including burns, cuts, contusions, falls, etc. for those serving the food; and food poisoning and communicable disease like Hepatitis for those purchasing the food. Recommended safeguards for proper purchase, storage, cooking, and serving food are:

1)      Purchase food from a reliable vendor.

2)      Store food at appropriate temperatures.

3)      Document food storage temperatures as well as food serving temperatures, with cold storage at 40 degrees F or below and hot foods at 180 degrees.

4)      Provide plastic gloves, hairnets, as appropriate for food servers.

5)      Prohibit food handlers from taking money/payment as money is unsanitary.

6)      Document clean-up and sanitation of food preparation equipment.


7.       Safety – Weather


A.      No lightning safety guidelines will give 100% guaranteed total safety. The suggested guidelines below will help you avoid the vast majority of lightning casualties. Lightning safety:

1)      When lightning is seen or thunder is heard immediately suspend the game and/or practice and move to a safe location.

2)      Apply the 30-30 rule. When you see lightning, count the time until you hear thunder. If this time is 30 seconds or less, seek proper shelter. If you can’t see the lightning, just hearing the thunder is a good back-up rule. Wait 30 minutes or more after hearing the thunder before leaving shelter.

3)      Referees must protect the safety of all participants by stopping game activities quicky, so that participants and spectators may retire to a safer place before the lightning becomes a significant. Remember, if you can hear thunder, you are within reach of lightning.

4)      Know and heed warning systems and community rules. Many communities or park systems have lightning detection and warning systems. Use this information and obey the rules established by the community or park system.

5)      Seek proper shelter. The safest place to be during a thunderstorm with or without visible lightning is in a car or in a fully-enclosed building.


B.      No severe weather safety guidelines will give 100% guaranteed total safety, but these steps will help you avoid the vast majority of casualties. Hail safety:

1)      Suspend game or practice.

2)      Clear field.

3)      Seek proper shelter.

4)      Follow guidelines for lightning.


C.      No severe weather safety guidelines will give 100% guaranteed total safety, but these steps will help avoid the vast majority of casualties. Tornado safety:

1)      Watch for rapidly darkening skies.

2)      The sound of an approaching tornado is often described as that of an approaching train.

3)      The funnel of a tornado does not have to touch down to cause extensive damage and injuries.

4)      Tornados can produce winds of 300 miles per hours or more.

5)      Most people who are hurt during a tornado are hurt when they are struck by flying debris.

6)      Obey local rules and heed warnings (meaning that a tornado has been sighted).

7)      Clear the field and seek proper shelter immediately.

8)      Remember, according to standard weather terminology a “warning” represents a more immediate occurrence than a “watch”.

9)      Seek safety in a solid structure, preferably in a basement or in an interior room. If no building is available, lay down in a ditch.


D.      If the game official does not immediately suspend the game when any one of the points above have occurred, the head coach from each team can agree that one of the criteria listed above have occurred they are to withdraw their team from the field. If this action is taken, then both coaches must submit a written report to their league outlining the circumstances, the facts concerning the weather conditions at the time, the fact that the two coaches were in agreement and the name of the officials at the game.


E.       Each league should establish their own procedures for replaying of any games suspended due to weather.


8.       Safety – First Aid


A.      The first aid kit should be placed where it is readily accessible and should include the following supplies:

1)      Absorbent compress dressings (5×9 inches)

2)      Adhesive bandages (assorted sizes)

3)      Adhesive cloth tape (10 yards x 1 inch)

4)      Antibiotic ointment packets

5)      Antiseptic wipe packets

6)      Packets of aspirin (81 mg each)

7)      Breathing barrier (with one way valve)

8)      Instant cold compresses

9)      Non-latex gloves (size: large)

10)   Hydrocortisone ointment packets

11)   Scissors

12)   Roller bandages (3 inches wide)

13)   Roller bandages (4 inches wide)

14)   Sterile gauze pads (3×3 inches)

15)   Sterile gauze pads (4×4 inches)

16)   Oral thermometer

17)   Triangular bandages

18)   tweezers

19)   Sunscreen

20)   First aid instruction booklet


9.       Role of Coach/Player/Parent


A.      The Spindletop Youth Soccer Coach will oversee all aspects of his/her respective team during the seasonal year.

1)      The coach will make all playing time decisions. Recreational soccer and Division II requires a minimum 50% playing time per game. Please note that if a player displays a poor attitude and/or behavior, misses training, or is late, this may be grounds for less than 50% playing time.

2)      The coach is responsible for the training session and the game lineups.

3)      The coach is responsible for calling and presiding over team meetings.

4)      The coach is to be on time for all meetings, training sessions and games.

5)      We recommend that every activity sponsored by our program put a Buddy System in place. Each youth participant should be assigned a buddy during sponsored activities. No child should go anywhere without his or her buddy.

6)      The coach is to maintain and uphold the standards set forth by Spindletop Youth Soccer on and off the field of play.


B.      The Spindletop Youth Soccer Player will be accountable for his/her actions during the seasonal year.

1)      All players will be required to attend all training sessions, to arrive on time and be properly attired.

2)      All players will be required to attend and arrive 30 minutes prior to game kickoff for team warm-up.

3)      Notify their respective coach if they will miss or be late for training session or game.

4)      Be prepared for all training sessions and games: proper uniform, shoes, shin guards, soccer ball of the correct size and a water bottle.

5)      The player is to maintain and uphold the standards set forth by Spindletop Youth Soccer on and off the field of play.

6)      Respect the coach, all other Spindletop players and staff, the game day opposing team, and referees.

7)      Do not display a poor attitude and/or behavior as this may be grounds for less than 50% playing time.

8)      All players are to act in a manner that minimizes unnecessary (dissent, flagrant fouls) yellow and red cards during the games.

9)      Players are to be on their best behavior while representing Spindletop Youth Soccer during training sessions, games, and tournaments. Players will be disciplined for poor conduct at any Spindletop event.


C.      The Spindletop Youth Soccer Parent will be accountable for his/her actions during the seasonal year.

1)      The role of the parent is very simple. Be a parent, not a coach or referee.

2)      Do not use alcohol or tobacco during training sessions or games. The presence, possession, or being under the influence of any illegal or illicit drugs or alcohol is prohibited at any function of Spindletop Youth Soccer.

3)      Support your son/daughter in a positive manner.

4)      Do not coach from the sidelines during games or training sessions.

5)      Be on time.

6)      Once your son/daughter has joined the team’s training session or game, do not interfere until the coach dismisses the team.

7)      Do not interfere with the center referee or assistant referees, the opposing team’s players/parents or staff, or any field marshal.

8)      Do not use foul or abusive language.

9)      Parents sit on the opposite sideline/half from the team during games unless otherwise directed by the coach, referee or field marshal.

10)   No taunting of opposing team’s players, parents, coaches or spectators.

11)   Stay off the fields during team training sessions or games.

12)   Be responsible for your child at all games and functions including tournaments.

13)   We recommend that every activity sponsored by our program put a Buddy System in place. Each youth participant should be assigned a buddy during sponsored activities. No child should go anywhere without his or her buddy.

14)   For coaching issues, contact your respective coach first and then the Director of Coaches. Spindletop Youth Soccer has a 24 hour rule in effect, this will allow a 24 hour window before any communication is made between parent and coach to allow emotions to settle.

15)   Please make note that Spindletop Youth Soccer will be very firm with our parents. If a situation deems necessary, Spindletop Youth Soccer will hold a D&P Hearing with a committee to determine if a parent was in violation of the above “Role of the Parent”. If a parent is found in violation, suspension may be incurred by Spindletop Youth Soccer.