SafeSport Reporting Policy

Updated: February 14, 2019
Background Information:

The primary intention behind USA Cycling’s SafeSport Program is to prevent misconduct and abuse from happening, but there is no guarantee the program will be 100% effective.  For times when prevention efforts aren’t enough to stop occurrences of misconduct and abuse from happening, USA Cycling has created a reporting system that encourages individuals to report misconduct and/or abuse. 

Prohibited Conduct, must be reported immediately.  Reporting can be intimidating, and sometimes it is not clear who should be notified; this policy should serve as a tool for individuals attempting to identify the appropriate authorities.  USA Cycling has hereby adopted the following reporting policy:

An effective reporting policy that results in reports of suspected abuse and misconduct, and does not in any way deter victims or witnesses from reporting abuse and misconduct, is a key element to preventing abuse and misconduct from occurring.  Abusers will avoid involvement in a program where there is a likelihood that suspected abuse will be reported.  By providing this guidance on when and how to report suspected misconduct, USA Cycling seeks to remove barriers to disclosing misconduct, including child physical and sexual abuse.

In some cases a reporter/observer may be hesitant about reporting Prohibited Conduct for any number of reasons.  It is critical the reporter/observer does not attempt to evaluate the credibility or validity of allegations, especially those allegations surrounding child physical or sexual abuse, as a condition for or prior to reporting their concerns.  Determining the credibility of a person making an allegation and the validity of the facts on which an allegation is based are the responsibility of USA Cycling, The U.S. Center for SafeSport and/or law enforcement or child protection officials.  

All Covered Individuals must report conduct of which they become aware that could constitute a violation of the Code, including Prohibited Conduct.  There are no costs associated with filing a report.

  1. The following must be reported to USA Cycling’s Risk Protection Manager:
    1. Conduct that could constitute a violation of the Code,
    2. Physical Misconduct,
    3. Emotional Misconduct,
    4. Bullying and Threats,
    5. Harassment (including sexual harassment), and
    6. Hazing
  2. The following must be reported to the U.S. Center for SafeSport:
    1. Sexual Misconduct and
    2. Other Prohibited Conduct that is reasonably related an underlying allegation of Sexual Misconduct.
  3. The following must also be reported to law enforcement:
    1. Sexual abuse of a minor
    2. Physical abuse of a minor

If USA Cycling receives a report of Prohibited Conduct as described in Sections B and C above, USA Cycling will report the violation to the U.S. Center for SafeSport and to law enforcement as appropriate.

A Covered Individual who is required, but fails, to report suspected child sexual abuse could be subject to criminal penalties.

The procedures to report Prohibited Conduct to USA Cycling, the U.S. Center for SafeSport and appropriate law enforcement authorities are listed below.  USA Cycling strongly encourages Covered Individuals not to investigate suspicions or allegations on your own.  If a threat of immediate harm exists, contact local law enforcement before reporting the misconduct through any of the channels listed below:

To USA Cycling:

If reporting by e-mail, USA Cycling encourages you to include the following information:

  1. Name(s) and contact information of the reporter(s), unless reporting anonymously.
  2. Name(s) of the individual(s) alleged to have committed the Prohibited Conduct.
  3. Type of Prohibited Conduct alleged.
  4. Approximate date(s) the Prohibited Conduct was committed.
  5. How the complainant(s) acquired the knowledge of the alleged Prohibited Conduct.
  6. Names of other individuals who might have information regarding the alleged Prohibited Conduct.
  7. Summary statement of the reasons to believe that the Prohibited Conduct has occurred.
To the U.S. Center or SafeSport:

U.S.Center for SafeSport
c/o Response and Resolution Office
1385 S Colorado Blvd Suite A-706
Denver, CO 80222

To Law Enforcement:

A compilation of information on when a person must make a report to law enforcement or child protection authorities can be found at:

  1. ChildWelfare.gov
  2. Mandatory reporters
  3. State statutes
  4. Child abuse reporting phone number by state
  5. 1-800-4-A-Child (1-800-422-4453)

The following sections address other matters that a reporter/observer may be concerned with when contemplating making a report:

Confidentiality

Reports of Prohibited Conduct may be submitted on a confidential basis by the complainant or may be submitted anonymously.  Reports will be kept confidential to the extent possible, consistent with the need to conduct an adequate investigation.
To the extent permitted by law, and as appropriate, USA Cycling and its affiliates will keep confidential the complainant’s name on request, not make public the names of potential victims, the accused perpetrator or the people who made a report of child physical or sexual abuse to the authorities.

“Whistleblower” Policy

No person who in good faith reports Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation shall suffer harassment or retaliation as a result of reporting.  This Whistleblower Policy is intended to encourage and enable those with an obligation to report Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation to do so without fear of repercussion.
Regardless of outcome, USA Cycling will support the reporter and his or her obligation to report Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation in good faith.  USA Cycling will not tolerate attempts from an individual, group or organization to retaliate, punish, allow or in any way harm any person who reports a concern in good faith.  Such actions against a person reporting Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation will be considered a violation of this policy and grounds for disciplinary action.

Bad-Faith Allegations/Acting in Good Faith

Anyone reporting Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation must do so in good faith and have reasonable grounds for believing Prohibited Conduct has or a Code violation has occurred. Any unsubstantiated allegations of Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation that (1) were made maliciously or (2) were made knowingly to be false are prohibited and considered a serious offense.  Such reports are grounds for disciplinary action.  Depending on the nature of the allegation, a person making such a report may also be subject to civil or criminal proceedings.

Sexual Misconduct:

The U.S. Center for SafeSport shall act in accordance with the SafeSport Practices and Procedures for the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Movement.

Other Prohibited Conduct and Code Violations:

USA Cycling will conduct an initial internal investigation of such reports.  If USA Cycling determines additional investigation is necessary, USA Cycling will retain a third-party investigator in accordance with USA Cycling’s Policy III: Administrative Grievances.

Suspicions or Allegations of Child Physical or Sexual Abuse

Reporting to Law Enforcement and/or Child Protective Services

An independent investigation can harm youth and/or interfere with the legal investigative process.  Accordingly, USA Cycling shall not attempt to evaluate the credibility or validity of child physical or sexual abuse as a condition for or prior to reporting to appropriate law enforcement authorities.  However, it may be necessary for USA Cycling to ask a few clarifying questions of the minor or the person making the report to adequately report the suspicion or allegation to law enforcement authorities.

Notification

Following a report of Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation, USA Cycling may notify members, Local Associations, Clubs or others with whom the accused individual may have had contact. As appropriate, USA Cycling may notify its staff, members, volunteers, or parents of any allegation of child physical or sexual abuse or other criminal behavior that law enforcement authorities are actively investigating. Advising others of an allegation may prevent the accused from participating in cycling without USA Cycling’s knowledge and may also lead to additional reports of child physical or sexual abuse and other misconduct.

An effective reporting policy that results in reports of suspected abuse and misconduct, and does not in any way deter victims or witnesses from reporting abuse and misconduct, is a key element to preventing abuse and misconduct from occurring.  Abusers will avoid involvement in a program where there is a likelihood that suspected abuse will be reported.  By providing this guidance on when and how to report suspected misconduct, USA Cycling seeks to remove barriers to disclosing misconduct, including child physical and sexual abuse.

In some cases a reporter/observer may be hesitant about reporting Prohibited Conduct for any number of reasons.  It is critical the reporter/observer does not attempt to evaluate the credibility or validity of allegations, especially those allegations surrounding child physical or sexual abuse, as a condition for or prior to reporting their concerns.  Determining the credibility of a person making an allegation and the validity of the facts on which an allegation is based are the responsibility of USA Cycling, The U.S. Center for SafeSport and/or law enforcement or child protection officials.  

All Covered Individuals must report conduct of which they become aware that could constitute a violation of the Code, including Prohibited Conduct.  There are no costs associated with filing a report.

  1. The following must be reported to USA Cycling’s Risk Protection Manager:
    1. Conduct that could constitute a violation of the Code,
    2. Physical Misconduct,
    3. Emotional Misconduct,
    4. Bullying and Threats,
    5. Harassment (including sexual harassment), and
    6. Hazing
  2. The following must be reported to the U.S. Center for SafeSport:
    1. Sexual Misconduct and
    2. Other Prohibited Conduct that is reasonably related an underlying allegation of Sexual Misconduct.
  3. The following must also be reported to law enforcement:
    1. Sexual abuse of a minor
    2. Physical abuse of a minor

If USA Cycling receives a report of Prohibited Conduct as described in Sections B and C above, USA Cycling will report the violation to the U.S. Center for SafeSport and to law enforcement as appropriate.

A Covered Individual who is required, but fails, to report suspected child sexual abuse could be subject to criminal penalties.

The procedures to report Prohibited Conduct to USA Cycling, the U.S. Center for SafeSport and appropriate law enforcement authorities are listed below.  USA Cycling strongly encourages Covered Individuals not to investigate suspicions or allegations on your own.  If a threat of immediate harm exists, contact local law enforcement before reporting the misconduct through any of the channels listed below:

To USA Cycling:

If reporting by e-mail, USA Cycling encourages you to include the following information:

  1. Name(s) and contact information of the reporter(s), unless reporting anonymously.
  2. Name(s) of the individual(s) alleged to have committed the Prohibited Conduct.
  3. Type of Prohibited Conduct alleged.
  4. Approximate date(s) the Prohibited Conduct was committed.
  5. How the complainant(s) acquired the knowledge of the alleged Prohibited Conduct.
  6. Names of other individuals who might have information regarding the alleged Prohibited Conduct.
  7. Summary statement of the reasons to believe that the Prohibited Conduct has occurred.
To the U.S. Center or SafeSport:

U.S.Center for SafeSport
c/o Response and Resolution Office
1385 S Colorado Blvd Suite A-706
Denver, CO 80222

To Law Enforcement:

A compilation of information on when a person must make a report to law enforcement or child protection authorities can be found at:

  1. ChildWelfare.gov
  2. Mandatory reporters
  3. State statutes
  4. Child abuse reporting phone number by state
  5. 1-800-4-A-Child (1-800-422-4453)

The following sections address other matters that a reporter/observer may be concerned with when contemplating making a report:

Confidentiality

Reports of Prohibited Conduct may be submitted on a confidential basis by the complainant or may be submitted anonymously.  Reports will be kept confidential to the extent possible, consistent with the need to conduct an adequate investigation.
To the extent permitted by law, and as appropriate, USA Cycling and its affiliates will keep confidential the complainant’s name on request, not make public the names of potential victims, the accused perpetrator or the people who made a report of child physical or sexual abuse to the authorities.

“Whistleblower” Policy

No person who in good faith reports Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation shall suffer harassment or retaliation as a result of reporting.  This Whistleblower Policy is intended to encourage and enable those with an obligation to report Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation to do so without fear of repercussion.
Regardless of outcome, USA Cycling will support the reporter and his or her obligation to report Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation in good faith.  USA Cycling will not tolerate attempts from an individual, group or organization to retaliate, punish, allow or in any way harm any person who reports a concern in good faith.  Such actions against a person reporting Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation will be considered a violation of this policy and grounds for disciplinary action.

Bad-Faith Allegations/Acting in Good Faith

Anyone reporting Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation must do so in good faith and have reasonable grounds for believing Prohibited Conduct has or a Code violation has occurred. Any unsubstantiated allegations of Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation that (1) were made maliciously or (2) were made knowingly to be false are prohibited and considered a serious offense.  Such reports are grounds for disciplinary action.  Depending on the nature of the allegation, a person making such a report may also be subject to civil or criminal proceedings.

Sexual Misconduct:

The U.S. Center for SafeSport shall act in accordance with the SafeSport Practices and Procedures for the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Movement.

Other Prohibited Conduct and Code Violations:

USA Cycling will conduct an initial internal investigation of such reports.  If USA Cycling determines additional investigation is necessary, USA Cycling will retain a third-party investigator in accordance with USA Cycling’s Policy III: Administrative Grievances.

Suspicions or Allegations of Child Physical or Sexual Abuse

Reporting to Law Enforcement and/or Child Protective Services

An independent investigation can harm youth and/or interfere with the legal investigative process.  Accordingly, USA Cycling shall not attempt to evaluate the credibility or validity of child physical or sexual abuse as a condition for or prior to reporting to appropriate law enforcement authorities.  However, it may be necessary for USA Cycling to ask a few clarifying questions of the minor or the person making the report to adequately report the suspicion or allegation to law enforcement authorities.

Notification

Following a report of Prohibited Conduct or a Code violation, USA Cycling may notify members, Local Associations, Clubs or others with whom the accused individual may have had contact. As appropriate, USA Cycling may notify its staff, members, volunteers, or parents of any allegation of child physical or sexual abuse or other criminal behavior that law enforcement authorities are actively investigating. Advising others of an allegation may prevent the accused from participating in cycling without USA Cycling’s knowledge and may also lead to additional reports of child physical or sexual abuse and other misconduct.