QuidditchUK Volunteer Disciplinary Policy

Terminology

1) The list of individuals to whom this document applies shall be henceforth referred to as ‘affiliates’. This covers all QuidditchUK volunteers, including members of the executive management team (EMT). If it is unclear whether the intended subject of a complaint should be considered an affiliate, then the President has the final decision.

2) The phrase ‘disciplinary inquiry’ refers to the investigation officially undertaken by QuidditchUK into complaints of a QuidditchUK affiliate committing any of the offences provided in the list in this document.

3) The phrase ‘disciplinary action’, meanwhile refers to the procedure officially undertaken as a response by QuidditchUK if and when it is determined that any of the abovementioned offences have been committed by an affiliate.

4) The full process of receiving a complaint or allegation, pursuing it in a disciplinary inquiry, and conducting any appropriate disciplinary action is to be referred to as the ‘disciplinary process’.

5) The disciplinary process is always to be carried out in a formal and professional manner, and in the best interests of QuidditchUK and quidditch in the UK. It is never to be used in connection with an issue which is personal to any QuidditchUK volunteer involved in the disciplinary process. Misusing any part of the disciplinary process is a cause for a disciplinary inquiry in itself.

6) Where there is any possibility of personal bias being an influence on the decisions of the individual’s involvement in any part of the disciplinary process, the individual should be removed or replaced. The assessor should be replaced by selecting the next applicable individual from the list provided, whilst members of a disciplinary committee should be replaced with any member of the QuidditchUK EMT who has not previously been involved in this disciplinary process and does not have any conflict of interest. Here parties presenting a conflict of interest may include but is not limited to:

  • Current or previous teammates
  • Current or previous romantic partners
  • Close friends
  • Relatives

It is to be noted that it should not be considered a conflict of interest for the assessor of a complaint to be a provider of the complaint in question in the disciplinary process. It is, however, considered to be a conflict of interest for any member of the disciplinary committee, to be a provider of the complaint.

Offences

The following are all offences that warrant investigation and, if necessary, disciplinary action:

  1. Discrimination offences apply to all affiliates;
    1. publicly demonstrating hate towards any individual, group, race, gender, sexuality, religion or ethnicity.
    2. refusing either publicly or privately to observe any individual’s preferred gender identity after multiple corrections.
    3. refusing either publicly or privately to work with an individual on the grounds of their race, gender, sexuality, religion or ethnicity.
    4. exhibiting any other kind of behaviour or action which is deemed racist, sexist, gender-based, homophobic, transphobic, motivated by religious hatred, or anything deemed to be equivalent.
  2. Abuse offences apply to all affiliates;
    1. Direct verbal abuse towards any individual, whether intended as abusive or not.
    2. sexually or physically abusing any individual, whether intended as abusive or not.
    3. sexual assault against any individual.
  3. Work ethic offences apply only to QuidditchUK volunteers, both temporary and permanent;
    1. Failing to regularly attend relevant meetings or failing to provide adequate notice and seek approval for meetings which cannot be attended. Exceptional circumstances notwithstanding.
      1. It will be considered inappropriate for an executive QuidditchUK volunteer to fail to attend two consecutive meetings or to attend less than seventy-five percent of meetings over three months.
      2. It will be considered inappropriate for a non-executive QuidditchUK volunteer to fail to attend three consecutive meetings, or to attend less than sixty-six percent of meetings over three months.
    2. Refusing to work on an assigned project.
    3. Consistently failing to meet assigned targets or deadlines on a particular project.
    4. For department leaders, speaking on behalf of QuidditchUK concerning an issue or project to the wider community in a way that contradicts the values and ethos of QuidditchUK. This includes inadvertently conveying the impression of doing so by failing to distinguish between personal and professional input.
    5. Becoming involved personally in controversial or contentious public or private discussion with intent to cause disruption or dissent.
    6. At the discretion of the leader of the project or meeting, impeding or obstructing the progress of said project or meeting by failing to adapt to the wider objectives and priorities of the team or by refusing to defer to the authority of a senior QuidditchUK volunteer.
  4. Sportsmanship offences apply only to QuidditchUK member players, non-playing coaches, spectators, clubs, referees, and snitch runners.
    1. impeding or obstructing the progress of a QuidditchUK game, match, or tournament without justifiable cause.
    2. acting during a QuidditchUK game, match, or tournament in such a way as to damage or contravene the integrity of fair, reputable, and competitive gameplay.
    3. displaying attitude or conduct on a quidditch pitch or in a quidditch environment which brings or threatens to bring QuidditchUK into disrepute by association of membership.
      1. Depending on the severity of the attitude or conduct, this clause may extend to fantasy tournaments, international events, Quidditch Premier League events, and other regional events separate to QuidditchUK
    4. failing to respect the absolute authority of the referee team during any QuidditchUK game or match, or of the tournament or league directors during any QuidditchUK tournament.
  5. Miscellaneous offences can apply to all affiliates.
    1. doing, or failing to do, anything which is considered to be inappropriate considering the affiliate’s relationship to QuidditchUK and the relative context. This will be determined by a consensus between the QuidditchUK President and Vice President.

Please note, that the severity of an offence may increase in the case of volunteers who are in prominent positions within QuidditchUK, including

  • department leaders
  • EMT members
  • Volunteer roles in high visibility areas, especially those involving presenting to and interacting with the public.

This applies to both within and beyond the quidditch community and as such will be taken into account when proceeding with disciplinary action.

Process

The disciplinary process must begin with a formal complaint against an affiliate. This applies to both executive and non-executive volunteers and complaints can be filled out by any affiliates of QuidditchUK.

  1. The Official complaint is registered through the QuidditchUK website via the ‘Contact Us’ form.
    1. Complaints should detail:
      1. The nature of the complaint
      2. Information such as times and dates of offences as described above
  2. An appropriate individual is decided to oversee the disciplinary process, known as the assessor, no later than two weeks after receiving the complaint. Conflicts of interest are taken into account to select the assessor;
    1. The list of candidates, shown from high to low priority, are given:
      1. The Volunteers Director
      2. Another volunteer in the Human Resources Department
      3. The affiliate’s QuidditchUK Department Director
      4. The QuidditchUK Vice President
      5. The QuidditchUK President
      6. An eligible member of the EMT, chosen at random
  3. The assessor should approach individuals and seek out evidence associated with the complaint. This will be conducted by the assessor in a discrete manner and should not discuss the process, decisions or evidence presented outside of conversations with the assessor or assessors. Evidence may include but is not limited to:
    1. Statements from witnesses, involved parties, other relevant individuals and the provider/s of and subject/s of the complaint
    2. Resources such as records, footage, social media or other notable, relevant evidence.
    3. Other relevant sources deemed to represent or clarify the nature of the complainant.
  4. Taking into account the evidence acquired, the assessor will determine whether or not the complaint is valid and consequently, whether the complaint will be dismissed or carried forward. The provider/s and subject/s of the complaint will be informed of the assessor’s decision with a short explanation as to why.
    1. In the case of the dismissal of a complaint, the provider may choose the appeal the decision. In this case, see stage nine for further details.
  5. If the complaint is upheld, disciplinary action against the subject of the complaint will be carried forward. The assessor will use a number of criteria to determine the severity of the complaint to inform the decision of the disciplinary committee.
    1. The criteria for determining severity of the complaint includes:
      1. The affiliation of the subject/s to QuidditchUK
      2. The type of offense, namely discrimination, abuse, work ethic, sportsmanship or miscellaneous
      3. The extent of an offense or offences, including duration and number of offences
      4. The disciplinary history of the subject/s of the complaint
    2. Where a complaint includes multiple subjects, this process will be applied to each individually.
    3. From this point up until the decision on disciplinary action, if an offence is determined by the assessor to be unique, contentious or notably severe they can refer the subject/s of the complaint directly to a disciplinary committee, disregarding stages six to eight detailed below.
  6. Following assessment of the complaint, a report should be produced by the assessor
    1. This report should be completed no later than two weeks from the receipt of the complaint.
    2. The report should cover:
      1. whether or not QuidditchUK considers the subject/s of the complaint to have committed any disciplinary offences, and if so what disciplinary action is to be taken.
      2. Each disciplinary offense covered in the initial complaint with an explanation as to whether these offences were deemed to have been committed and why.
      3. The report should conclude with the action recommended and carried forward by QuidditchUK, if any, to address the complaint.
  7. This report will be submitted and reviewed by a previously uninvolved member of the QuidditchUK EMT to confirm whether it is consistent with the facts as they understand them and consistent with QuidditchUK core values. They should also review the standard of the report to ensure it is clear and of a professional standard that can be distributed outside of QuidditchUK;
    1. If the report is deemed to fail this stage by the reviewer, it will be returned to the assessor with the issues listed for redrafting.
    2. If the report is deemed to meet criteria for consistency and presentation;
      1. The report will be shared with the provider/s and subject/s of the complaint and the QuidditchUK President.
      2. The identity of the provider/s remains confidential when distributing the report to the subject/s of the complaint.
      3. Before receiving the report, all recipients should sign an agreement not to share the report whilst the disciplinary process is still ongoing. Sharing the report having signed this agreement can result in further disciplinary action.
      4. A summary of the report shall be released to the relevant individuals following completion.
    3. This process should be completed within one week of the report being submitted.
  8. A period, typically two weeks, should be determined and made known by the assessor within which either the provider(s) or the subject(s) of the complaint may appeal against the findings of the disciplinary inquiry and/or the disciplinary action taken.
    1. An appeal must be lodged by a provider or subject (or both) of the complaint by means of an email to the assessor. No details are required in this e-mail other than the desire to appeal; all exposition should be given in the disciplinary hearing.
    2. If an appeal is lodged, a disciplinary hearing must take place. If it is not, the process will proceed onward.
  9. A disciplinary hearing must be held within two weeks of the appeal being registered, and must be attended by a disciplinary committee. This disciplinary committee is to be chaired by a member of the EMT who has previously been uninvolved in and had no links with the disciplinary process in question. In addition to the chair, the disciplinary committee should consist of the President or Vice President of QuidditchUK.
    1. If the subject(s) of the complaint include a QuidditchUK volunteer, then the disciplinary committee should include that volunteer’s director and (where one exists) their manager.
    2. If the subject(s) of the complaint include a QuidditchUK member club or member player, then the disciplinary committee should include the Outreach Director and the Development Director.
    3. If the subject(s) of the complaint include a QuidditchUK member referee or member snitch runner, then the disciplinary committee should include the Gameplay Director.
    4. Note that in all of these cases, multiple roles in the disciplinary committee cannot be filled by the same individual. Additionally, if they are not included in any of the above, the original assessor of the complaint should be included on the disciplinary committee.
  10. The disciplinary hearing must include the entirety of the disciplinary committee, in addition to the individuals raising the appeal. During the hearing, the appealing parties are required to tell the complete truth and must answer any questions which are asked by the disciplinary committee. The appealing parties are entitled to speak for up to ten minutes each about why the action taken was inappropriate.
    1. If the appealing parties include a member club, then they should be represented by their registered representative in the disciplinary hearing.
    2. If a complaint was passed by the assessor to a disciplinary hearing without appeal, then the subject(s) of the complaint are to be present at the hearing, and have ten minutes to speak in their defence.
  11. The disciplinary committee are empowered during the hearing to uphold or dismiss the complaint, whatever the original decision made. They are also empowered to amend the disciplinary action decided upon as they see fit. The final decision must be passed by at least a fifty-one percent vote in the disciplinary committee.
    1. In the event of a tied vote, the chair of the disciplinary committee is obliged to cast a second vote which will decide the outcome, and abstention in this second vote is not an option.
    2. In the event of an appeal being lodged by the subject(s) of the complaint where the complaint has been upheld, the disciplinary committee will typically increase the severity of the disciplinary action recommended if they judge the appeal to have been unfounded.
    3. Note that the conclusions of the disciplinary committee are final; there can be no appeal once a disciplinary hearing has been conducted.
  12. If an appeal has been submitted, then the assessor’s report should be amended by the chair of the disciplinary committee to incorporate the appeal and reflect any changes resulting from it. If any changes are made, it should be redistributed to the relevant individuals.
    1. When this is done, or if no appeal is submitted within the set date, then the disciplinary process should be considered concluded.
  13. When the disciplinary process is concluded, any disciplinary action decided upon should be implemented immediately.
    1. Additionally, the assessor or the chair of the disciplinary committee (depending on whether an appeal was heard or not) should ask the provider(s) of the complaint whether they wish the report to be shared.
      1. If no reply or a negative reply is received, no public mention of the report should be made.
      2. If there is no provider of the complaint then the disciplinary committee will decide whether the report should be published.
      3. If all of the complaint providers (or in a case where there is no complaint provider; members of the disciplinary committee) unanimously agree to its publication, then the report should be published on the QuidditchUK website alongside a brief summary of the initial complaint.

Action

Following the decision by a disciplinary hearing, the action will be implemented.

  1. Verbal warning
  2. Written warning
  3. Review of Practice
  4. Temporary suspension from role
  5. Presidential suspension from role
  6. Temporary suspension of Membership
  7. Permanent suspension of Membership

The suspension procedure is generally as follows:

  1. The suspension is recorded officially on an individual’s disciplinary profile
  2. The period of suspension is determined and administered based on the severity of the transgression, as determined by a disciplinary committee.
  3. Once the penalty has been determined, an announcement detailing the length and reasoning for the suspension will be published on the QuidditchUK website. Individuals will have the opportunity to appeal the punishment between the point at which the suspension is decided upon and the announcement
  4. In extreme instances QuidditchUK membership is revoked for the duration of the suspension.
    1. The individual is not permitted to participate in events as a player or take on duties as a volunteer in events or attend QuidditchUK meetings as a volunteer.
    2. Suspended players are considered illegal players. Any team caught fielding a suspended player automatically forfeits the match. See the QuidditchUK Suspension Policy here.
  5. Once the period of suspension has finished all effects of the suspension are lifted and the individual can regain membership and the ability to participate at events if they were unable to do so during the suspension.
  6. Upon completion of the suspension, bans on the person will be lifted and full membership may be reinstated, with ability to attend and compete at all official QuidditchUK events.
    1. QuidditchUK reserves the right not to reinstate the person as a volunteer within QuidditchUK, dependant on the initial transgression that occurred; these will be reviewed on a case by case basis by the EMT.

Summary