FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS REGARDING THE SAFE SPORT BACKGROUND CHECK Prepared for USEF Licensed Officials 1. Why does USEF have a Background Check Policy? USEF is implementing the Safe Sport Policy to protect its athletes and ensure a safe and fun environment for equestrians to develop their skills. The Safe Sport Policy is designed as an educational and preventative tool to be used by coaches, trainers, athletes, and all those who enjoy the equestrian sport. Part of the Safe Sport Policy, is the requirement for all USEF Licensed Officials undergo routine background checks as a prerequisite for attaining or renewing that licensed status. 2. When will I have to run a background check? In order to renew your License for the 2014 competition year, you must submit the necessary waivers so that a background check can be run. After that, background checks will be renewed every two (2) years. 3. Who has to submit to a background check? Everyone who falls under the category of â€œUSEF Designeeâ€? must comply with the USEF Background Check Policy. This includes, but is not limited to, all USEF staff, licensed officials, and any individual that USEF formally authorizes, approves, or appoints to a position of authority over or to have frequent contact with any athlete. 4. How often must I submit to a background check? All Designees must submit to a background check every two (2) years or as otherwise required by law. 5. What do I submit in order to begin the background check procedure? You will need to fill out a consent form to begin the background check procedure. As part of the Safe Sport Policy, you will need to keep USEF up to date on all your criminal history by completing a Disclosure Form. 6. What offenses are being screened for? All sex offense, felonies, and misdemeanors are screened for during a background check. 7. Will any offense lead to a disqualification? All sex offenses and violent felonies are disqualifiers regardless of when they occurred. All other felonies (not sex or violent) in the past 10 years are disqualifiers. All violent misdemeanors, misdemeanors that would be considered a danger to children or animal cruelty, in the past seven (7) years are disqualifiers. Two or more drug and/or alcohol misdemeanors in the past seven (7) years are disqualifiers. If a crime occurred outside of the specified time frames, it is not reported, therefore will not be considered or lead to a disqualification. For example, if you were charged with a drug felony 11 years ago, you would not be disqualified from seeking a license to officiate through the USEF. Or for example, if you had a DUI from five (5)years ago and a drug possession charge from eight (8) years ago, you would not be considered disqualified. 8. What determines the classification of crimes? The jurisdiction in which a crime is tried will determine the classification of the crimes. USEF Safe Sport | 1
9. Are the background check results available to the public? USEF will keep all results and information from the background check confidential. 10. Do I have to apply online? If you are uncomfortable filling out the background check information online , you may request a paper form. 11. Who conducts the background check? SSCI, a background check company, will be conducting the background checks on behalf of USEF. You will find SSCI’s website at www.ssci2000.com. Criminal Background check provisions are under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. When you are filling out the Disclosure of Personal Identifying Information or Consent and Waiver forms you are not agreeing to a credit check nor will the Federation be conducting a credit check. 12. What information must I provide to the background check vendor? You must provide your Social Security Number, first and last name, home address, birthdate, and email information to the background check vendor. 13. How long will it take to receive my background check results? The results of the background check will be sent to you and USEF within three (3) to five (5) business days. 14. How do I know that my background check has been completed? You will be notified by email when SSCI’s report returns either a “red light” or “green light.” • A “green light” finding means that the vendor located no records that would disqualify you for USEF designee status. You will receive a notification from the USEF that you may proceed with the process of renewing your USEF license(s) so long as you have met all other license requirements. • A “red light” finding means the criminal background check revealed criminal records that suggest an individual “does not meet the criteria” and is not suitable for USEF designee status. This notification will come directly to you and will include specifics regarding the findings. This information is not shared with the USEF, only with you. 15. What should I do if my background check returns incorrect or inaccurate criminal information? If the background check returns incorrect or inaccurate criminal information, an individual may challenge the accuracy of the report with the vendor. Instructions regarding the process of challenging a finding are included in the notification supplied directly to you by the vendor. The USEF is not presented with any knowledge of the details regarding any findings. 16. If I receive a disqualification due to my background check, will I have an opportunity to appeal that decision? If an individual receives a “red light” and would like to appeal that decision, they may seek an exemption from the USEF Exemption Panel which is a committee made up of members of the USEF Hearing Committee. To seek the exemption from disqualification, an individual should contact Sonja S. Keating, USEF General Counsel, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (859)225-2045, or by going to www.safesport.usef.org 17. What does the background check cost? USEF will be covering the costs of running the initial background check.
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18. What if I do not submit to the background check? If an individual refuses to submit to a background check, that individual is no longer able to apply for or renew their USEF Licensed Official status. 19. Who can I contact with questions? Sonja S. Keating, General Counsel email@example.com (859)225-2045 20. If I want to discuss my personal record or better understand if my personal situation is going to be an issue, or if I have been â€œred flaggedâ€? and need some advice regarding how to proceed with appealing a decision, with whom may I speak at the USEF. The USEF has appointed Emily Pratt as the Licensed Officials Safe Sport Ombudsman. You may contact her by phone at 859-225,6956 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org Any conversation you have with her will be strictly confidential .
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