Diversity and Inclusion Policy

This Diversity and Inclusion Policy is applicable to the staff of Onyx Squash Academy Ltd and its partner venues and is based on similar policies of local, national, and international Squash governing bodies.

1. Policy Statement

As an organisation, we contribute actively to enable more people from all backgrounds to play Squash more often, in a manner that is safe, inclusive, and fair; under the legislative requirements of the Equality Act of 2010.

This applies regardless of a person’s age, disability, gender reassignment status, sex, marital or parents/guardian civil partnership status, race, religion, race 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 partner venues, programmes, events, and individuals to deliver and experience a positive Squash experience for everyone.

1.1 Recruitment

We are a people organisation and recruit people from all cultural backgrounds.

With international recruitment, we ask all Squash coaches have evidence to meet UK Visa requirements to work and live in the United Kingdom.

1.2 Background checks

Each perspective Squash coach of the Onyx Squash Academy will undergo an enhanced criminal background check as part of the safeguarding requirements in the Children’s Act 1989.

With Squash coaches from overseas, we would ask that provide evidence of a police background check from your country.

Upon successful background checks, we will make a formal offer of employment and require you to sign a contract.

2. Our Approach

2.1 Terminology

We have adopted the following definitions to explain our approach to diversity and inclusion in squash:

  • Discrimination – treating someone in a less favourable way and causing them harm, because of their age, disability, gender reassignment, parent’s marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation
  • 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 an 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 Squash 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, or coach

We will work to ensure that people have a genuine and equal opportunity to participate fully in their own ambitions and abilities so that they feel respected and valued and are not singled out, with regard to their background.

2.2 Action to deal with incidents

Positive action – Onyx Squash Academy 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 Squash and participation in associated activities by people from any group that is under-represented in Squash or has difficulty accessing it and that they can do so with dignity or without being singled out.

3. Scope

To ensure good diversity and inclusion practice, we recommend and support any continuous professional development needs for our stakeholders of the Onyx Squash Academy:

  • Staff, consultants, coaches and officials we employ;
  • Volunteers, including board members and councillors they recruit;
  • Ensuring all accreditation requirements are met by accredited coaches, officials, and venues.
  • Players, parents, and carers agreements;
  • Volunteers recruited by other organisations;
  • Club Events at our partner venues in association with us.

This Policy is in line with legislation and applicable to our partner venues, specifically to every person and place where we have direct safe and inclusive responsibility for our participants.

4. Responsibility for implementation of the Diversity and Inclusion Policy

Diversity and inclusion are the responsibility of everyone: in not responding to discriminatory or unacceptable language and behaviour is not an option.

The Onyx Squash Academy will request a Welfare Officer at its commercial partners’ venue is responsible for supporting the club to identify where diversity and inclusion support is required, plus 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/guardians/carers.

  • All staff, consultants, coaches, officials, and volunteers involved in Squash are responsible for raising diversity and inclusion concerns with the club’s Welfare Officer to start with; then the Safe and Inclusive Squash team if applicable, as outlined in the Reporting Procedure.
  • Players, parents, and guardians are responsible for upholding the Code of Conduct and Reporting Procedure.
    Onyx Squash Academy is committed will formally adopt this policy by:

Taking steps to ensure that our Advisory Board members, participants, and volunteers behave in accordance with the policy, including where appropriate taking disciplinary action under our constitution; o ensure that access to membership as well as access to participation is open and inclusive.

Make available and post up accurate information about this policy in the location of partner venues for participants and their parents/guardians/carers to see and support measures and initiatives that British Squash may institute or take part in to advance the aims of this policy as part of our commitment to our mission to promoting squash opportunities for all.

5. Breaches of the Diversity and Inclusion Policy

Where there is a diversity and inclusion concern/disclosure: we would expect the individual who is told about, hears, or is made aware of a concern, will need to complete a Concern Reporting Form, which will be sent out to them by the Directors of the Onyx Squash Academy.

The following illustrates how the breaches are dealt with:

5.1 Reporting Concerns

Where there are concerns that diversity and inclusion good practice has not been followed, all staff is encouraged to report them to the Directors as soon as possible.

All participants in the Squash coaching sessions are expected to report their concerns involving discrimination to the Directors, who will immediately discuss the matter with the persons involved and then follow up with the individual and their parent/guardian to reach an amicable solution for all parties.

Any breaches of this Policy and/or failure to comply with the outlined responsibilities may result in the following by the local, national and international Squash governing body:

  • Venues – potential termination of a partnership under terms and conditions of the partnership agreement.
  • Staff – disciplinary action leading to possible dismissal and legal action.
  • Contracted consultants, officials, and coaches – termination of current/future roles within our organisation and possible legal action.
  • Recruited volunteers and board members – termination of current and future roles within our organisation and possible legal action.

5.2 Code of Conduct and Reporting Procedure

Actions taken by staff, consultants, volunteers, officials, coaches, venues, clubs, and/or events outside of local, national, and international Squash governing bodies 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 local Squash or an independent appeal body such as Independent Sport Resolutions may be used. Their decision is final.

Written by the Directors of the Onyx Squash Academy
First edition: 31st December 2020 (Updated 21/07/2022)