By Denis Hurley
Thursday, December 13, 2012
The GAA’s National Children’s Officer has expressed his
confidence that the association’s new code of practice for young people, and
those working with them, will prove to be a success.
Our Games, Our Code, which packages best practice together for the first
time, was recently launched and Gearóid Ó Maolmhichil has stressed the
importance of the new initiative.
"It’s important that, through our
coaches and our parents, we’d promote what we call good practice," he said.
"That includes useful hints, for example, what they should have on a
website, texting and communication young people, if there’s a problem how to
deal with it, whether it’s a code of behaviour or if an allegation has been
"In the past, people had to try and access it and it mightn’t
have always been easy. This will be available on every club website, every
county website, and the same applies to camogie and ladies football as well."
Having the code in place leaves the GAA in a strong position ahead of
"We have some important pieces of legislation
coming in next year which will impact on all sports," Ó Maolmhichil said.
"There will be a Garda vetting bill and we’re pleased that that is
coming in because we’re already vetting our coaches, we have already vetted
50,000 people on the island.
"The second piece is the Children First
Bill, and in that there will be a legal requirement for the association, from
county to club level, to adhere to good practice. We’re happy, we don’t fear
legislation, we welcome it, and it will put our work into a good context."
Ó Maolmhichil was speaking at the launch of the Rebel Óg master
fixture plan for 2013 at the Rochestown Park Hotel.
Fixtures are more streamlined now than in the past, with Féile qualifiers now to be played over
two weekends as they had been impacting on the U14 county competitions, while
the first week of August is free of championship activity to abet family
In addition, some championships may be run in league
format, though this will be announced later.