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0. Supporting Resources

This procedure has been designed with reference to ACAS best practice for Disciplinary Procedures and it may be appropriate to reference ACAS advice to ensure processes are followed fairly and consistently. 

These links and the ACAS website may help provide guidance and help in how to put this Procedure to use.

https://www.acas.org.uk/investigations-for-discipline-and-grievance-step-by-step
https://www.acas.org.uk/disciplinary-procedure-step-by-step

1. Purpose and scope

This procedure is designed to help and encourage all club members to achieve and maintain standards of conduct. The code of conduct and this procedure apply to all club members. The aim is to ensure consistent and fair treatment for all in the organisation.

2. Principles

Informal action will be considered, where appropriate, to resolve problems.

No disciplinary action will be taken against a club member until the case has been fully investigated.

For formal action the club member will be advised of the nature of the complaint against him or her and will be given the opportunity to state his or her case before any decision is made at a disciplinary meeting.

Club members will be provided, where appropriate, with written copies of evidence and relevant witness statements in advance of a disciplinary meeting.

At all stages of the procedure the club member will have the right to be accompanied by a governing body representative, or club member of their choice.

No club member will be removed from the club for a first breach of discipline except in the case of gross misconduct, when the penalty will be removal without notice or refund.

A club member will have the right to appeal against any disciplinary action.

The procedure may be implemented at any stage if the club member’s alleged misconduct warrants this.

3. The procedure

First stage of formal procedure

This will normally be:

  • a first warning for misconduct if conduct does not meet acceptable standards. This will be in writing and set out the nature of the misconduct and the change in behaviour required and the right of appeal. The warning will also inform the club member that a final written warning may be considered if there is no sustained satisfactory improvement or change. A record of the warning will be kept, but it will be disregarded for disciplinary purposes after 6 months.

Final written warning

If the offence is sufficiently serious, or if there is further misconduct during the currency of a prior warning, a final written warning may be given to the club member. This will give details of the complaint, the improvement required and the timescale. It will also warn that failure to improve may lead to removal from the club (or some other action short of removal) and will refer to the right of appeal. A copy of this written warning will be kept by the exec committee but will be disregarded for disciplinary purposes after 12 months subject to achieving and sustaining satisfactory conduct.

Removal or other sanction

If there is still further misconduct, the final step in the procedure may be dismissal or some other action short of dismissal such as demotion or disciplinary suspension. Removal decisions can only be taken by the exec subcommittee, and the club member will be provided in writing with reasons for removal, the date on which their club membership will terminate, and the right of appeal.

If some sanction short of removal is imposed, the club member will receive details of the complaint, will be warned that dismissal could result if there is no satisfactory improvement, and will be advised of the right of appeal. A copy of the written warning will be kept by the supervisor but will be disregarded for disciplinary purposes after 6 months subject to achievement and sustainment of satisfactory conduct or performance.

Gross misconduct

The following list provides some examples of offences which are normally regarded as gross misconduct:

  • theft or fraud
  • physical violence or bullying
  • deliberate and serious damage to property
  • serious misuse of an organisation’s property or name
  • serious insubordination
  • unlawful discrimination or harassment
  • bringing the organisation into serious disrepute
  • serious incapability in the club brought on by alcohol or illegal drugs
  • causing loss, damage or injury through serious negligence
  • a serious breach of health and safety rules
  • a serious breach of confidence.

If you are accused of an act of gross misconduct, you may be suspended from the club without any wrongdoing implied, normally for no more than seven working days, while the alleged offence is investigated. 

If, on completion of the investigation and the full disciplinary procedure, the club is satisfied that gross misconduct has occurred, the result will normally be summary removal from the club without refund of club membership.

Appeals

A club member who wishes to appeal against a disciplinary decision must do so within seven working days, in writing, to the Secretary. 

You have the right to be accompanied by a governing body representative, or club member of your choice at this meeting, if you make a reasonable request.

An exec committee sub-committee of committee members who were not previously involved in the case will hear the appeal.

At the appeal, the sub-committee will review:

  • all information previously presented previously
  • any new information made available to them
  • any disciplinary penalty imposed.

After the meeting, the sub-committee will give you a decision, normally within 24 hours. The sub-committee's decision is final.

Sanctions

Removal from the club - as defined in the Constitution, means removal from the club plus any associated online groups and being prevented from accessing club resources.

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