The Scottish FA has been named the first national association to implement the International Safeguards for Children in Sport across Scottish football, part of a global initiative coordinated by Unicef UK.

Scottish football’s governing body joins Manchester United, Manchester City and the US Olympic Committee among a select group of 50 Pioneer Organisations from across six continents working with the International Safeguarding Children in Sport Working Group to further develop, implement and test safeguards designed to promote and protect young players’ wellbeing.

The Scottish FA will ensure every player under the age of 18 receives the same level of safeguarding and protective measures as recognised internationally. We have enlisted the support of the following Affiliated National Associations (ANAs) to meet the objectives:

-          Scottish Amateur Football Association
-          Scottish Junior Football Association
-          Scottish Schools Football Association
-          Scottish Youth Football Association
-          South of Scotland League

The child safeguarding standards were agreed in 2012 by a working group of international youth, sport and development organisations. It was co-ordinated by Unicef UK, with support from Unicef, and based on the work of the Child Protection in Sport Unit (CPSU) of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty To Children (NSPCC). These safeguards were formally launched at the Beyond Sport summit in Johannesburg, South Africa, in October 2014.

Stewart Regan, Scottish FA Chief Executive: “I am really proud that the Scottish FA has become a Pioneer Organisation of this excellent and essential initiative to implement International Safeguards for Children in Sport. We are committed to the welfare of young players at all levels of the national game and to be part of Unicef UK’s global network – and the first national association to join - is another example of the sterling work undertaken by our Child Protection and Safeguarding Manager at the Scottish FA.

“I am also pleased to see our ANAs supporting us in this commitment to ensure the wellbeing of children is of paramount importance in Scottish football.”

Liz Twyford at Unicef UK: “On behalf of the International Safeguarding Children in Sport Working Group, we are really pleased to welcome the Scottish FA as our latest Pioneer Organisation. By working together and sharing good practice and the experiences we have globally, we aim to make sport safer for children everywhere.”