Dear Families, Coaches and Committee members,
The grading season is always an intense experience, not less because its early in the year and it can feel like we are suddenly thrust head long into heavy schedule of games with highly competitive Melbourne clubs. It can be quite a cultural shock as well as a physical and mental transition. The Committee are very proud of all our players and coaches for how you have stepped up to these demands and for your professional and sporting attitude and behaviour.
However, as a club we have in the past experienced several unpleasant and alarming incidents of poor spectator behaviour. This has not only taken an undue amount of time and attention away from the joy of watching our kids, it has caused us as parent volunteers and committee members unnecessary distress and discomfort. This is not just a problem for our club, as observers of regular games of other Melbourne clubs many of us have witnessed similar and worst behaviour over the same period.
There are many contributing factors to incidents of poor behaviour, but there several mitigating factors which if addressed should help us more confidently, safely and effectively promote a positive playing environment for 2023/4 seasons. These relate to ensuring club officials and marshals are more fully informed and educated about; our roles and powers in such situations, the relevant Football Victoria statutes and what we can do in these situations to help reduce tensions and our options are when this is not possible.
The BCFC Committee wishes to ensure we as adult members of the club are fully informed and empowered with an understanding of how we can best support a consistently positive playing and training environment for our football community. Over the off season and into the season proper BCFC will continue to liase with FV Community Engagement representatives to develop and provide online sessions for coaches, parents and committee members with the objective of addressing;
- What constitutes poor behaviour? What is an is not acceptable?
- Defining our roles as club officials, marshals, and committee in the event of poor behaviour
- Strategies to intervene to de-escalate & resolve problematic behaviour
- FV regulations/by laws relating to spectator & club official behaviour and complaint reporting processes
Prio to season 2024 we will be sending out an email invitation with zoom session times, so please stand by.
In the meantime, this issue is a real concern to Football Victoria. This week FV has launched Respect the Game initiative. We ask all families to please watch and review the relevant video below and read the Ground Marshal handbook attached:
Download the Ground Marshal Handbook