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Oct, 2018

WYSI reinforces its commitment to provide a safe environment for all athletes

In recent months you have undoubtedly heard the horrifying reports of misconduct within youth and Olympic sport organizations affecting hundreds of youth athletes. In light of these unfortunate situations we wanted to take a moment to highlight what WYSI has instituted in recent years to help protect its members and to also ask you, the parents and guardians of our young athletes, for continued help in strengthening our efforts. 

Two years ago WYSI took major steps towards creating a best-in-class coach/volunteer background check program.  Some of those improvements were:
  • a requirement that all active coaches and volunteers submit a background check every 12 months at no cost to them
  • improved and defined criteria which to evaluate each background check report
  • an objective screening committee made up of non-Westfield individuals with law enforcement and judicial system backgrounds
  • published list of individuals current on their background checks and eligible to coach and/or volunteer a WYSI sport
  • background checks that are free to all WYSI coaches/volunteers
Since the program has been put in place, over 1000 individuals have submitted a background check.

We take great pride in these steps, but at the time we instituted these improvements we committed ourselves to continue to monitor our program internally to see where future improvements were necessary. 

With all the improvements listed above we feel confident we have created the foundation for the safest environment possible for the young WYSI athletes.  But as an organization, where all board members, sport commissioners, and coaches volunteer their time we know there are some gaps to still fill and we are actively working to strengthen the program.  
The one area we need help from you, the parents and guardians, is to actively monitor who is at your son’s and daughter’s practices serving as coaches and active volunteers and report individuals that are not listed on our published list of coaches/volunteers in good standing.  With over 275 teams and 4000 practice sessions each year, we as a volunteer board simply do not have the resources to monitor every practice and team for compliance.  We need your help to do this.   Click here to report individuals you believe are not in compliance. Sincerely, WYSI Board of Directors








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