Diversity and Inclusion Policy

Diversity and Inclusion in Knebworth Tennis Club

This Policy sets out our commitment and Reporting Procedure and it supports our overall aims for diversity and inclusion that are to ensure that:

  • Tennis is diverse and inclusive
  • Diversity and inclusion are embedded in our club’s culture and our behaviours
  • We create a culture where inclusive leadership thrives
  • We take a proactive approach using positive action to ensure that communities and individuals are valued and able to achieve their full potential.

To achieve these aims we believe that everyone involved in Tennis has a vital role to play in promoting diversity and inclusion and we ask everyone to become Safe and Inclusive Tennis Champions – proactively promoting Safe and Inclusive tennis and taking action against all forms of discrimination.

We are proud to have a Diversity and Inclusion Policy that demonstrates our commitment to making tennis diverse and inclusive. The commitment to Diversity and Inclusion is upheld by all - Lawn Tennis Association (LTA), Tennis Scotland, Tennis Wales and the Tennis Foundation.

Together we can make a positive difference to people from different backgrounds to participate in Tennis at our club.

Thank you.

Knebworth Tennis Club Committee

Diversity and Inclusion Policy

1. Policy Statement

This Diversity and Inclusion Policy, Standards, Code of Conduct and Reporting Procedure are applicable to Knebworth Tennis Club and is based on similar policies of:

  • The Lawn Tennis Association (LTA)
  • Tennis Scotland
  • Tennis Wales
  • The Tennis Foundation.

As a club we contribute actively to enable more people to play tennis more often, in a manner that it is safe, inclusive, and fair. This applies regardless of a person’s age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation, socio-economic status or any other background.

We recognise that many concerns and/or disclosures may have both safeguarding and diversity and inclusion elements to them. This policy reflects this through its reporting procedures, which replicate the safeguarding concern reporting procedures. 

This Policy strives to minimise risk and support our venue, programmes, events and individuals to deliver and experience a positive tennis experience for everyone. The Reporting Procedures in page 2 outlines how to respond to safeguarding or discrimination concerns/disclosures.

2. Use of Terminology

KTC have adopted the following definitions to explain our approach to diversity and inclusion in tennis:

Discrimination treating someone in a less favourable way and causing them harm, because of their age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation, socio-economic status or any other background.

Diversity – acknowledging, celebrating and respecting the differences between groups of people and between individuals. We will work to ensure that people can be assured of an environment in which their rights, dignity and individual worth are respected, and in particular that they are able to enjoy their sport without the threat of intimidation, victimisation, harassment or abuse.

Harassment unwanted conduct related to a relevant protected characteristic, which has the purpose or effect of violating an individual’s dignity or creating and intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for that individual or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment. The focus is on the perception of the complainant not the intent of the perpetrator. Employees can complain of behaviour they find offensive even if it is not directed at them.

Inclusion ensuring that tennis is equally accessible to any member of the community so they can be fully involved in whatever capacity they choose; and that they are supported to achieve their potential in any capacity e.g. player, employee, volunteer, coach or official. We will work to ensure that people have a genuine and equal opportunity to participate to the full extent of their own ambitions and abilities, that they feel respected and valued and are not singled out, with regard to their age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation, socio-economic status or any other background.

Positive action –Knebworth Tennis Club is committed to taking positive steps to counteract the effects of physical or cultural barriers – whether real or perceived – that restrict the opportunity for all sections of the community to participate equally and fully. We will ensure that we institute, support or contribute to appropriate measures or initiatives that enable access to tennis and participation in associated activities by people from any group that is under-represented in tennis or has difficulty accessing it and that they can do so with dignity or without being singled out. 

3. Scope

Knebworth Tennis Club has direct safe and inclusive responsibility for:

  • Coaches;
  • Volunteers;
  • Courts, clubhouse and grounds within the enclosure;
  • Events and programmes they run; and
  • Ensuring all accreditation requirements are met by accredited coaches.

We recommend and support the development of good diversity and inclusion practice to:

  • Accredited coaches;
  • Players, parents, guardians and carers;
  • Volunteers;
  • Club Events.

This Policy is in line with national legislation and applicable to our club, specifically to every person and place that we have direct safe and inclusive responsibility for.

4. Responsibility for implementation of the Diversity and Inclusion Policy

Diversity and inclusion is everyone’s responsibility: not responding to discriminatory or unacceptable language and behaviour is not an option.

  • The club’s Committee and Chair have overall accountability for this Policy and Reporting Procedure, for being the strategic lead on diversity and inclusion and for ensuring compliance with the relevant legislation (see Appendix for details).
  • The club’s chair, Mike Maresh, and Welfare Officer, Adrienne Swann, have overall responsibility for implementation of the policy.
  • The Chair and Welfare Officer of the club are responsible for updating this Policy and Reporting Procedure in line with legislative and organisational developments; and develop a strategic and proactive approach to diversity and inclusion and respond to discrimination concerns.
  • The Knebworth Tennis Club’s Welfare Officer , Adrienne Swann, is responsible for supporting  the club to identify where diversity and inclusion support is required; to implement safe and inclusive procedures; promote diversity and inclusion principles, including the Safeguarding and Reporting Procedure, to all the venues they manage, programmes, events and individuals including players, parents and carers.
  • All coaches and volunteers involved in tennis are responsible for raising diversity and inclusion concerns with the club’s Welfare Officer to start with; then the Safe and Inclusive Tennis team if applicable, as outlined in the Reporting Procedure.
  • Players, parents, guardians and carers are responsible for upholding the Code of Conduct and Reporting Procedure.
  • The Knebworth Tennis Club is committed to:
  1. formally adopting this policy;
  2. take steps to ensure that our committee, members, participants and volunteers behave in accordance with the policy, includung where appropriate takingdisciplinary action under our constitution;
  3. ensure that access to membership as well as acce to participation is open and inclusive;
  4. publish accurate information about the location and accessibility of our facilities; and
  5. support measures and initiatives that British Tennis may institute or take part in to advance the aims of this policyas part of our commitment to our LTA membership.

Where there is a diversity and inclusion concern/disclosure:

  • The individual who is told about, hears, or is made aware of the concern/disclosure is responsible for following the Concern Reporting Procedure above.

5. Breaches of the Diversity and Inclusion Policy, Standards, Code of Conduct and Reporting Procedure

Where there are concerns that diversity and inclusion good practice has not been followed, all are encouraged to follow the club’s whistleblowing policy; coaches, volunteers and members are encouraged to:

1. Complain directly to the person or organisation and seek resolution. In the first instance, this can often resolve many disputes or concerns.

2. If required, you can contact the LTA Safe and Inclusive Tennis Team: [email protected] - they can assist in liaising with the club and investigating the matter. Alternatively, the NSPCC Whistleblowing advice line: 0800 028 0285; [email protected]  can be contacted.

3. Seek further advice from the Equality Advisory Support Service a call on 0808 800 0082. For further information their website is: http://www.equalityadvisoryservice.com/app/ask 

If someone comes to you with a concern around discrimination, listen to their complaint, reassure them and advise them of the routes listed above (1-3).

Breaches of this Policy and/or failure to comply with the outlined responsibilities may result in the following by the LTA and the Tennis Foundation:

  • Venues – Potential removal of LTA accreditation
  • Coaches – termination of any current and future roles within the LTA and national organisations and possible legal action.
  • Recruited volunteers – termination of any current and future roles within the LTA and national organisations and possible legal action.

Actions taken by members, volunteers, coaches, venues, clubs and/or events outside of the LTA and the Tennis Foundation that are seen to contradict this Policy may be considered a violation of this Policy.

Where an appeal is lodged in response to a safeguarding decision made by the LTA Safe and Inclusive Tennis Team and Safeguarding and Protection Committee and/or Licensing and Registration Committee, an independent appeal body such as Sport Resolutions may be used. Their decision is final.