Recommendations contained in “Report to USA Gymnastics on Proposed Policy and Procedural Changes for the Protection of Young Athletes” by Deborah Daniels

Below is a list of the recommendations contained in Deborah Daniels’ “Report to USA Gymnastics on Proposed Policy and Procedural Changes for the Protection of Young Athletes,” her comprehensive, independent review of USA Gymnastics policies, procedures and bylaws regarding safe sport matters. Ms. Daniels presented her report and recommendations to the USA Gymnastics Board of Directors, when the Board unanimously voted to accept her recommendations.


RECOMMENDATION
Report Page No.
Overarching: cultural shift throughout USA Gymnastics
P. 23
USA Gymnastics needs to undergo a complete cultural change, permeating the entire organization and communicated to the field in all its actions. USA Gymnastics needs to take action to ensure that this change in culture also is fully embraced by the clubs that host member coaches, instructors and athletes.
The culture that needs to be adopted is that USA Gymnastics’ top priority is the safety and well-being of its athletes, not just their success on the field of play.
Board Structure and Duties
P. 29
1.Amend Bylaws to Clarify Priority of Athlete Well-being
2.Revise Board Selection Process
3.Ensure that Term Limitations are Consistently Enforced
4.Reduce or Eliminate Conflicts of Interest
5.Provide Abuse Training for the Board of Directors
6.Create, Maintain and Regularly Update Board Handbook
7.Create Accountability for Protection of Children, Driven by Board
8.Increase the Number of In-Person Board Meetings
9.Ensure that Each Board Meeting Includes a Robust Discussion of Safe Sport Matters
10.Hold an Executive Session at the Conclusion of Each Board Meeting
11.Conduct an Annual Enterprise Risk Review That Routinely Includes Safe Sport Issues
Administrative Management
P. 37
12.Develop Position Descriptions for All Positions; Include Child Protection Requirements
13.Seek Individuals With Expertise in Child Protection for Leadership Team
14.Seek Administrators With Fresh Perspective
15.Exclude President from Safe Sport Disciplinary Control
16.Ensure Greater Accountability of President to Board
17.Change Culture of Entire Staff to Athlete Safety First
18.Require Greater Accountability of Child Protection Function to Board
19.Require Strategic Plan from Newly Appointed Director of Safe Sport and Provide for Direct Reporting to Board
20.Create General Counsel Role and Centralize Legal Functions
Member Requirements and Enforcement
P. 51
21.Require That Owners of Member Clubs Also be Members of USA Gymnastics
22.Require That Every Person Working or Volunteering With Youth in Any Member Club Also Be a Member of USA Gymnastics
23.Strengthen Current Code of Ethical Conduct and Participant Welfare Policy (now called Safe Sport Policy) and Require Adoption In Full by Member Clubs
24.Develop a Disciplinary Process for Violations of the Revised Code of Ethical Conduct and Other Member Club Requirements
25.Ensure that Members Suspended or Deemed Permanently Ineligible are Banned from All Clubs
26.Develop and Require Training for All Member Clubs on Membership Requirements
Screening and Selection of Coaches, Volunteers and Other Adults with Access to Athletes
P. 59
27.Expand the Universe of Those Subjected to Background Checks
28.Consider Requiring Certification for Coaches Prior to Hiring
29.Provide Member Clubs with A Detailed Hiring Toolkit
30.Provide Club Owners and Hiring Personnel with Training on How to Use the Screening and Selection Toolkit
31.Review and Reconsider Method of Overriding Red Light Finding
32.Create Database of Persons Dismissed from Member Clubs
Process for Filing Reports of Misconduct
P. 68
33.Err on the Side of Protecting the Athlete in All Situations
34.Create a Clear Protocol for Response to Allegations Made Outside the Formal Grievance Process
35.Remove President from Controlling Role in Determining Disposition of Allegations
36.Provide for Board Oversight of the Process
37.Relax Due Process Requirements in Cases of Alleged Grooming or Abuse of a Minor
38.Clarify in Bylaws the Use of Preponderance of the Evidence Standard
39.Ensure That All Persons Involved in Response to Reports Are Properly Trained
40.Remove or Extend Time Bar for Allegations Relating to Abuse and Other Violations of the Code of Ethical Conduct
Education, Training and Athlete Support
P. 79
41.Implement a Strategic, Comprehensive Abuse Prevention Training Plan for Members, Parents and Athletes
42.Create Standalone Course in “Preventing Child Abuse in Gymnastics”
43.Revise and Expand the Current “Preventing Child Abuse in Gymnastics” to Include the Following, at a Minimum: Content and Examples Specific to Gymnastics, Updated Section on Reporting, Information About Other Types of Sexual Abuse
44.Ensure That USA Gymnastics Consistently Reinforces the Revised Training Content Through Annual Training Requirements
45.Create a Required, Annual Safe Sport Training for All Members Regarding USA Gymnastics’ Revised Abuse Prevention Policies, Procedures and Reporting Mechanisms
46.Include Mandatory Plenary Sessions for All National Congress Attendees on Safe Sport Requirements and Abuse Prevention Information
47.Require All Member Clubs to Host Annual Training for Coaches, Athletes and Parents (All Together) Regarding the Revised Code of Ethical Conduct and Revised Safe Sport Policy
48.Consider Creating a Safe Sport Certification for Clubs
49.Provide Parents Annually with Information about USA Gymnastics Abuse Prevention Policies and Procedures and How to Protect their Children from Abuse on an Annual Basis
50.Provide Athletes with Age-Appropriate Abuse Prevention Education on an Annual Basis
51.Provide a Stronger Support System to Athletes
52.Consider Creating an “Athlete Bill of Rights”
Encouraging Reporting of Suspected Violations
P. 87
53.Permit Third-Party Reporting of Policy Violations and Abuse to USA Gymnastics by Third Parties
54.Require Reporting of Abuse and Reporting of Policy Violations
55.Enforce Serious Consequences for Failure to Report Abuse
56.Expand Reporting Methods to Encourage and Facilitate Reporting
57.Accept and Investigate Reports Relating to Misconduct by a Member in Which the Victim is a Non-Member
58.Provide Training to All Members and Staff Regarding Reporting Requirements
National Team Training Center
P. 94
59.Create a Policy Handbook and Code of Conduct for All Coaches Bringing Athletes to the Training Center
60.Develop a Transportation Policy for National Team Training Center and Include this Information in the New Handbook
61.Formalize the Athlete and Coach Orientation Meetings at Each Specific Camp
62.Create a Formal Monitoring Plan for All Athlete Lodging
63.Provide Athletes with a Reliable and Accessible Way to Call Home/Parents
64.Formalize the Role of the Athlete Representative and Ensure This Individual Does Not Continue to Sit on the Selection Committee
65.Formalize Safety Procedures for the TOPs Camp
66.Require all National Team Coaches and Staff to Complete an Intensive In-Person Training on Abuse Prevention and Athlete Safety
67.Discontinue Use of the Athlete Recovery Center in Beijing and Consider Moving to a More Central and Open Location
68.Improve Physical Safety and Emergency Communications
National Team Selection Process
P. 99
69.Review Process with Experts
70.Remove Athlete Representative from Role in Selection Process