Code of Conduct

The BHAA is committed to promoting inclusion and accessibility for people of all abilities, to practice and enjoy horseback archery in our network of clubs throughout the U.K. 

The BHAA (the Association) is fully committed to safeguarding and promoting the well-being of all its members, ensuring a positive and enjoyable experience for all. The Association believes that it is important that members, coaches, administrators and parents associated with BHAA clubs and schools should, at all times, show respect and understanding for the safety and welfare of others. Therefore, members are encouraged to be open at all times and to share any concerns or complaints that they may have about any aspect of the Association or its members, clubs or schools, with the Chair and/or another Director. 

 As a member of the BHAA, you are expected to abide by the following code of practice.

All members shall:

  1. Take responsibility in ensuring they are up to date with the rules of any event in which they are competing and with this Code of Conduct, understand and adhere to them and follow safety guidelines at all times.
  2. Respect the rights, dignity and worth of all participants regardless of age, gender, ability/disability, race, cultural background, religious and/or political beliefs or sexual orientation or identity.
  3. Ensure that animal welfare is taken as a priority of the Association and is always upheld to prevent neglect, cruelty and harm to horses. Please also see our equine welfare statement.
  4. Recognise the valuable contribution made by coaches and officials who are usually volunteers. They give their time and resources to provide training and competitions for you.
  5. Treat others with respect.  In particular, decisions of competition officials or the BHAA Board should be publicly accepted, although if a member intends to challenge the decision through any appropriate appeal route, they are permitted to state that intention publicly.
  6. Refrain from consuming alcohol or taking any drugs, whether illicit or not, which may affect their ability to ride and/or shoot safely, during any coaching session or competition until they have finished their riding and shooting for the day.
  7. Adhere to all health and safety requirements at all training and competitions associated with the BHAA (including Clubs and Schools and when representing the BHAA internationally). In particular, wearing an appropriate riding helmet at all times whilst mounted, except in cases where religious/cultural exception or where disability renders the wearing of a hat impracticable. In such cases, the exception should be accepted by the coach/RSO running the event in advance.
  8. Refrain from any activity that may bring the sport into disrepute.  This includes all forms of bullying and harassment, whether conducted in person or not, including via social media.  It also includes abusive or derogatory comments that undermine individuals, the Association or the sport.
  9. Ensure that photos are only published with permission of the individual(s) in the photograph. If the individual is under the age of 18, the permission of their parent or guardian must also be obtained. Also, the permission of the photographer, who owns the copyright, must be given.
  10. Photos and videos must not be shared publicly if they could bring the BHAA into disrepute. The exception is that such photos and videos may be shared for educational purposes, with explanatory text explaining what is wrong. 
  11. Refrain from acting in a way that in contrary to or undermines the objectives of the BHAA.  Members who have financial or business interests in horseback archery must not act in a way that places those interests above the good of the sport.  In particular, members must not attempt to prevent the spread of the sport for their own business interests. Members wishing to apply for committee posts must declare any potential conflict of interest that could influence decisions they may be asked to vote on. If there is bias or the potential for the appearance of bias, then the individual may not vote on the matter to which the potential conflict relates. 
  12. Refrain from sharing private BHAA documents, which is our intellectual property, with non-BHAA members unless approved first by the BHAA Board.  This includes any document found within the Members’ section of the BHAA website and also includes the pdf of the BHAA Manual.

If a member is found to be in breach of these guidelines then the Board may decide that a statement recognising the breach and the potential agreement of additional actions e.g. an apology or relevant training; is enough, particularly for a first infraction. 
The Board can also issue a written warning. If a member were to receive 2 written warnings then a third infraction may result in suspension from the Association, or expulsion, to be decided by the Board (with a two thirds majority being sufficient to carry the vote), depending on the severity of the infraction and whether it is associated with disregard for previous disciplinary cautions. 

In the circumstances of gross misconduct, immediate suspension or expulsion may be imposed. This includes intentional flouting of the guidelines that could endanger safety or seriously undermine the Association’s mission.   

Following an expulsion, a member may not reapply for membership until at least 12 months after the date of their expulsion, and if readmitted will need to serve a 2-year probationary period during which no further infractions must occur, or the committee has the right to exclude that member for life. Such sanctions will be proportionate to the infraction(s).

If members have current warnings on their record, then their eligibility to represent the GB Team, as well as any applications for competitions and BHAA events will be negatively impacted and members without warnings will get priority.

The process for handling a Code of Conduct complaint is as follows:
Any breach of the Code of Conduct should be reported to the Chair of the Board and/or another Director within 3 months of the incident (exceptional circumstances will be considered for complaints made after 3 months)
– Chair (unless conflicted) leads the process, supported by 1 other Director
– Speak to those who made the complaint
– Share a written summary of the complaint with the individual who is reported to have breached the Code of Conduct
– Speak to the individual who is reported to have breached the Code of Conduct: note that they have 1 month to find time for this meeting (exceptional circumstances will be considered; if they do not find the time then a decision will be made without hearing their side of the story)
– Chair & Director report back to the Board with a proposal on how to proceed: dismiss the complaint, issue a written statement to the individual with any agreed actions, written warning, or gross misconduct 
– Communicate decision to the individual who is reported to have breached the Code of Conduct 

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