Listening to Children’s Voices in UK sports clubs: A Foucauldian analysis

Everley, S. (2022) Listening to Children’s Voices in UK sports clubs: A Foucauldian analysis. Child Abuse Review. pp. 1-10. ISSN 0952-9136

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Abstract

Organisations funded by Sport England or UK Sport must work towards achieving standards for safeguarding and protecting children in sport as set by the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children's Child Protection in Sport Unit (CPSU) and encourage a culture of listening to children. The present research was commissioned by the NSPCC CPSU to understand the practices of UK sports clubs regarding this objective. An electronic questionnaire was distributed through the national governing bodies of sport working with the CPSU. Some 64 clubs/squads representing 6,000+ juniors (under 18 years) responded. Quantitative data were analysed using simple statistics and qualitative data were themed utilising Foucault's theory of power and following Braun and Clark's six‐phase guide. Discourse, hierarchical judgement and docility were considered with reference to formal management and cultural environments. Semantic and latent themes were explored. The themes identified were: expectation awareness, reframing voice and preserving discourse. Clubs recognise the value of listening to children. However, existing power relations valorise adult knowledge fields over the experiences of juniors. Technology could provide an effective solution as it is remote, potentially anonymous and culturally accessible. As power is a productive force, problematisation of organisational culture could centralise children's voices and limit/prevent abuse.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Uncontrolled Keywords: children’s voices, prevention of abuse, safeguarding in sport, sports clubs and safeguarding children
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions: Academic Areas > Institute of Sport > Area > Sport Social Sciences
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Depositing User: Suzie Everley
Date Deposited: 10 Feb 2022 14:29
Last Modified: 11 May 2022 15:05
URI: https://eprints.chi.ac.uk/id/eprint/6125

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