Code of Conduct

5.1       GENERAL
The Winnipeg Youth Soccer Association (WYSA) is committed to creating a safe sport environment in which all individuals are treated with respect, dignity, and within the same rules and regulations.

WYSA supports equal opportunity and prohibits discriminatory practices. Individuals are expected to conduct themselves at all times in a manner that includes fairness, integrity, accountability, excellence, accessibility, innovation, and respect.

The following have these meanings in this Code of Conduct:
“Individuals” - All categories of membership defined in WYSA’s Constitution, as well as, all individuals engaged in activities with WYSA, including but not limited to, clubs, athletes, coaches, officials, volunteers, managers, administrators, directors and officers of WYSA, spectators of WYSA events and parents of WYSA members. 

5.3       PURPOSE
5.3.1    The purpose of the Code of Conduct (hereinafter referred to as the Code) is to ensure a safe and positive environment (within WYSA programs, activities, office, work environment, and events) by making Members aware that there is an expectation, at all times, of appropriate behaviour that maintains the dignity and self-esteem of all parties. WYSA supports equal opportunity, prohibits discriminatory practices, and is committed to providing an environment in which all individuals are treated with respect.

5.3.2    This Code is not intended to specifically outline every instance of misconduct. As such, misconduct not specifically listed in this Code which is not in line with the values of WYSA, MSA or CSA, May still constitute a breach of the Code and be subject to sanctioning.

5.4.1    An individual who violates this Code may be subject to sanctions pursuant to WYSA’s Disciplinary Code. An individual who violates this Code during a competition may be ejected from the competition or the playing area, the official may delay the competition until the individual complies with the ejection, and the individual may be subject to any additional discipline associated with the particular competition as per the WYSA Disciplinary Code.

5.4.2    This Code also applies to the conduct of individuals that may occur on social media and/or outside of WYSA’s business, activities, events, and meetings when such conduct adversely affects relationships within WYSA (and its work and sport environment) and is detrimental to the image and reputation of WYSA. WYSA will determine such in its sole discretion consistent with its belief that appropriate conduct is expected in all aspects in and out of the game.

5.5.1.   All Individuals have a responsibility to:

a) Maintain and enhance the dignity and self-esteem of WYSA members and other individuals by:
  i) Demonstrating respect to individuals regardless of body type, physical characteristics, athletic ability, gender, ancestry, colour, ethnic or racial origin, nationality, national origin, sexual orientation, age, marital status, religion, religious belief, political belief, disability or economic status;
  ii) Focusing comments or criticism appropriately and avoiding public criticism of athletes, coaches, officials, organizers, volunteers, employees and members
  iii) Consistently demonstrating the spirit of sportsmanship, sport leadership and ethical conduct:
  iv) Acting, when appropriate, to prevent or correct practices that are discriminatory;
  v) Consistently treating individuals fairly and reasonably; and
  vi) Ensuring adherence to the rules of soccer and the spirit of those rules.

b) Refraining from any behavior that constitutes harassment, where harassment is defined as comment or conduct directed towards an individual or group, which is offensive, abusive, racist, homophobic, sexist, degrading, or malicious. Types of behavior that constitute harassment include but are not limited to:
  i) Written or verbal abuse, threats, put-downs, name-calling, slurs or outbursts;
  ii) The display of visual material which is offensive or which one ought to know is offensive in the circumstances;
  iii) Unwelcome remarks, jokes, comments, innuendo or taunts;
  iv) Leering or other suggestive or obscene gestures;
  v) Condescending or patronizing behavior which is intended to undermine self-esteem, diminish performance or adversely affect working conditions;
  vi) Practical jokes which cause awkwardness or embarrassment, endanger a person’s safety, or negatively affect performance;
  vii) Any form of hazing where hazing is defined as “any potentially humiliating, degrading, abusive, or dangerous activity expected of a junior-ranking athlete by a more senior team-mate, which does not contribute to either athlete’s positive development, but is required to be accepted as part of a team, regardless of the junior-ranking athlete’s willingness to participate. This includes, but is not limited to, any activity, no matter how traditional or seemingly benign, that sets apart or alienates any team-mate based on class, number of years on the team, or athletic ability.”;
  viii) Unwanted physical contact including, but not limited to, touching, petting, pinching, or kissing;
  ix) Unwelcome sexual flirtations, advances, requests, or invitations;
  x) Physical or sexual assault;
  xi) Behaviors such as those described above that are not directed towards a specific individual or group but have the same effect of creating a negative or hostile environment; and
  xii) Retaliation or threats of retaliation against an individual who reports harassment to WYSA.

c) Refraining from any behavior that constitutes sexual harassment, where sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual comments and sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or conduct of a sexual nature. Types of behavior that constitute sexual harassment include, but are not limited to:
  i) Sexist jokes;
  ii) Display of sexually offensive material;
  iii) Sexually degrading words used to describe a person;
  iv) Inquiries or comments about a person’s sex life;
  v) Unwelcome sexual flirtations, advances or propositions; and
  vi) Persistent unwanted contact.

d) Abstaining from the non-medical use of drugs or the use of performance enhancing drugs or methods. More specifically, WYSA shall adopt and adhere to the MSA & CSA’s Anti-Doping Program. Any infraction under this program shall be considered an infraction of this Code and shall be subject to disciplinary action, and possible sanction, pursuant to the WYSA Disciplinary Code. WYSA will respect any penalty enacted pursuant to a breach of the Canadian Anti-Doping Program, whether imposed by the MSA, CSA or any other sport organization.

e) Refraining from associating with any person for the purpose of coaching, training, competition, instruction, administration, management, athletic development or supervision of the sport of competitive soccer, who has incurred an anti-doping rule violation and is serving a sanction involving a period of ineligibility imposed pursuant to the Canadian Anti-Doping Program and/or the World Anti-Doping Code and recognized by the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES).

f) Refraining from the use of power or authority in an attempt to coerce another person to engage in inappropriate activities;

g) In the case of adults, avoiding alcohol consumption in situations where minors are present, and take reasonable steps to manage the responsible consumption of alcoholic beverages in adult-oriented social situations associated with WYSA events;

h) Respecting the property of others and not willfully cause damage;

i) Promoting soccer in the most constructive and positive manner possible;

j) Adhering to all federal, provincial, municipal and host country laws; and

k) Complying at all times with the bylaws, policies, procedures, rules and regulations of WYSA, MSA, and CSA, as adopted and amended from time to time.

In addition to 5.5.1 above, the WYSA Board, Committee Members and Staff will:

a) Function primarily as a member of the board and/or committee(s) of the WYSA; not as a member of any other particular member or constituency;

b) Act with honesty and integrity and conduct himself or herself in a manner consistent with the nature and responsibilities of WYSA business and the maintenance of Member confidence;

c) Ensure that the financial affairs of WYSA are conducted in a responsible and transparent manner with due regard for his or her fiduciary responsibilities;

d) Conduct oneself openly, professionally, lawfully and in good faith in the best interests of WYSA;

e) Be independent and impartial and not be influenced by self-interest, outside pressure, expectation of reward or fear of criticism;

f) Behave with decorum appropriate to both circumstance and position and be fair, equitable, considerate and honest in all dealings with others;

g) Keep informed about the activities of WYSA, the sport community, and general trends in the sectors in which it operates;

h) Exercise the degree of care, diligence and skill required in the performance of his or her duties pursuant to the laws under which WYSA is incorporated;

i) Respect the confidentiality appropriate to issues of a sensitive nature;

j) Ensure that all individuals are given sufficient opportunity to express opinions, and that all opinions are given due consideration and weight;

k) Respect the decisions of the majority and resign if unable to do so;

l) Commit the time to attend meetings and to be diligent in preparation for, and participation in, discussions at such meetings;

m) Have a thorough knowledge and understanding of all WYSA governance documents;

n) Conform to the bylaws and policies approved by WYSA, in particular this Code of Conduct as well as, for Directors, the Conflict of Interest Policy and Confidentiality Agreement

5.5.3    CLUBS
In addition to 5.5.1 above, Clubs will:

a) Deliver their services in compliance with the constitution, bylaws, policies, rules, regulations and procedures of WYSA, and, where necessary, amend their own rules to comply with those of the WYSA;

b) Ensure that all athletes and coaches participating in sanctioned competitions are registered individuals in good standing, of their respective organizations; and

c) Engage only authorized coaches and sanctioned athletes.

5.5.4    COACHES
In addition to 5.5.1 above, coaches have additional responsibilities. The coach-athlete relationship is a privileged one and plays a critical role in the personal, sport, and athletic development of the athlete. Coaches must understand and respect the inherent power imbalance that exists in this relationship and must be extremely careful not to abuse it, consciously or unconsciously. Coaches should fall back to respected civil behaviour and should be cognizant to no raised voices, no aggressive body language, keeping a decent personal distance/space. Coaches will:

a) Meet the highest standards of credentials, integrity and suitability, including but not limited to such considerations established by the WYSA Screening Policy, so that the community is satisfied it has minimized the risk of an unsafe environment;

b) Report any ongoing criminal investigation, conviction or existing bail conditions, including those for violence; child pornography; or possession, use or sale of any illegal substance;

c) Under no circumstances provide, promote or condone the use of drugs (other than properly prescribed medications) or performance-enhancing substances and, in the case of minors, alcoholic beverages, tobacco or vaping;

d) Respect all other teams and athletes from other teams and, in dealings with them, not encroach upon topics or actions which are deemed to be within the realm of 'coaching', unless first receiving approval from the coach who is responsible for the team or athlete(s) involved;

e) Not engage in a sexual relationship with an athlete of under the age of 18 years, or an intimate or sexual relation with an athlete over the age of 18 if the coach is in a position of power, trust or authority over such athlete;

f) Recognize the power inherent in the position of coach and respect and promote the rights of all participants in sport. This is accomplished by establishing and following procedures for confidentiality (right to privacy), informed participation, and fair and reasonable treatment. Coaches have a special responsibility to respect and promote the rights of participants who are in a vulnerable or dependent position and less able to protect their own rights;

g) Dress appropriately, neatly and inoffensively;

h) Use inoffensive language, considering the audience being addressed;

i) Visiting teams and spectators are honored guests;

j) No advantages except those of superior skill should be taught;

k) Officials and opponents should be treated and regarded as honest in intention;

l) Winning is desirable but winning at any cost defeats the purpose of the match;

m) Losing can be a triumph when the team has given its best; and

n) The ideal is the greatest good to the greatest number.

5.5.5    ATHLETES
In addition to 5.5.1 above, athletes will have additional responsibilities to:

a) Report any medical problems in a timely fashion, where such problems may limit the athlete’s ability to travel, train or compete;

b) Participate and appear on time, well-nourished and prepared to participate to one’s best abilities in all competitions, practices, training sessions, events, activities, or projects;

c) Properly represent oneself and not attempt to enter a competition for which one is not eligible, by reason of age, classification, or other reason;

d) Never ridicule a participant for a poor performance or practice

e) Act in a sportsmanlike manner and not display appearances of violence, offensive language, or offensive gestures to other players, officials, coaches, or spectators;

f) Dress in a manner representative of WYSA with focus being on neatness, cleanliness, and discretion. Designated official clothing, if applicable, must be worn when traveling and competing;

h) Act in accordance with the WYSA’s rules and policies, and when applicable, additional rules as outlined by coaches or chaperones.

i) Play the match for the match’s sake;

j) Be generous when you win;

k) Be gracious when you lose;

l) Be fair always no matter what the cost;

m) Obey the laws of the match;

n) Work for the good of your team;

o) Accept the decisions of the officials with good grace;

p) Believe in the honesty of your opponents;

q) Conduct yourself with honor and dignity; and

r) Applaud the efforts of your teammates and your opponents.
5.5.6    OFFICIALS
In addition to 5.5.1 above, officials will have additional responsibilities to:

a) Accept an assignment to officiate at a match only if one intends to honour that commitment. If, for any reason, one is unable to attend, let the person in charge of officials know as soon as possible;

b) Be fair and objective;

c) Avoid situations in which a conflict of interest may arise;

d) Be as impartial, unobtrusive and inconspicuous as possible;

e) Conduct all competitions according to the rules of WYSA; and

f) Make independent judgments.

In addition to 5.5.1 above, parental evaluation carries a great deal of weight with youths. The attitude shown by parents at matches towards their child, the opposing team, the officials and the coach, influences the child’s values and behaviors in sports. Criticism, disrespect for officials and opponents undermines the purpose of sport and brings into the match stresses which adolescents cannot cope with effectively, thus contributing to behavior not in keeping with the spirit of the match.
Parents/guardians of individuals and spectators at events will:

a) Identify that children have more need for example than criticisms.

b) Make athletic participation for your child and others a positive experience.

c) Attempt to relieve the pressure of competition, not increase it. A child is easily affected by outside influences.

d) Be kind to your child’s coach and to the match officials. The coach is a volunteer giving personal time and money to provide a recreational activity for your child. The
coach is providing a valuable community service, often without reward other than the personal satisfaction of having served his/her community.

e) The opponents are necessary friends. Without them your child could not participate meaningfully.

f) Applaud good plays by your team and by members of the opposing team, whilst not engaging in any negative dialogue or actions that could be determined as harassment.

g) Do not openly question an official’s judgment and never his/her honesty. He/she is a symbol of fair play, integrity and sportsmanship.

f) Accept the results of each match. Encourage the child to be gracious in victory and turn defeat to victory by helping the child work towards improvement.

h) Encourage athletes to play by the rules and resolve conflicts without resorting to hostility or violence; and

f) Keep off the competition area and not interfere with events or calls.

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