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ESFA Best Practice Guidance

ESFA Best Practice Guidance

Changing Rooms and Showering Facilities

The following guidance advises Associations on best practice when using facilities shared by adults, children and young people.

It is recognised that Associations will use different facilities throughout the country, some with toilets, changing and showering facilities and some without.

We invite you to think about how your Association can effectively meet the needs of all its members, taking into account the facilities that are available to them, the number of people accessing them and the activities they are undertaking. Associations may decide that players are encouraged to come to games already changed, wearing suitably warm clothing e.g. tracksuits and go home after games to shower.

This guidance should be discussed by your Association Committee. If you have any further queries in relation to this guidance please contact either Sarah DaCosta or Martin Duffield (details below).

  • Where facilities are used by both adults and children at the same time there must access to separate changing, showering and toilet areas.
  • Adult staff/volunteers must never change or shower at the same time as children and young people using the same facilities.
  • For mixed gender activities, separate facilities must be available for boys and girls.
  • When younger children use changing rooms, they should be supervised by two members of staff/volunteers. Older teenagers may not require any supervision however an Association may wish to have an appropriately recruited adult within the vicinity of the changing facilities to ensure their welfare is monitored.
  • Adults should never be alone in the room with children whilst they are getting changed or showered.
  • If a child feels uncomfortable changing or showering in public then no pressure should be placed on them to do so. Instead, they should be encouraged to do so at home.
  • If children choose to wear swimming costumes or keep their underwear on whilst showering, they must be allowed to do so.
  • If children with disabilities are playing, make sure they and their carers are involved in deciding how they should be assisted. Make sure the child or young person is able to consent to the assistance that is offered.
  • The use of mobile phones and/or photographic equipment by officials, members, parents and young people is prohibited within areas where children and young people are changing/showering. (Please refer to ESFA Best Practice guidance for Photographs and Video)
  • Where no changing facilities are available the travelling Associations should be made aware prior to the game and advised to make alternative arrangements and to take appropriate additional clothing e.g. Tracksuits etc.
  • All adults who enter the changing rooms must have an up to date FA Criminal Record Check.
  • Adults should never be alone with an individual child in the changing rooms.

ESFA recognises that not all Associations have access to private facilities and may use those owned by the community/local authority/schools/private business. These facilities may already have their own policy on the use of changing and showering areas to which an Association may have to adhere as part of a facilities usage agreement. ESFA wishes to acknowledge that it has incorporated guidance provided by the CPSU in developing this best practice guidance.

If you wish to discuss this guidance further, please contact one of our National Welfare Officers Sarah DaCosta or Martin Duffield: tel 07960 500723 tel 07852 276416