Forres Bluefins Swim Club Suspended By Scottish Swimming Over Allegations of Negligence

A swim club in Scotland has been suspended by the national governing over “serious allegations” about the way the team is being run.

Forrest Bluefins Swim Club, located in the western area of Scotland in Moray, has been accused of allowing unqualified individuals without the proper child safety qualifications to coach young swimmers, according to a report from The Press and Journal.

Scottish Swimming has subsequently suspended the club following an investigation into its practices that spanned several weeks. The investigation was launched after concerns were raised about a number of issues regarding the club’s operations.

Scottish Swimming chief executive Euan Lowe said the management of the club had not been acceptable and accused Forres Bluefins of failing to fully cooperate with the governing body’s investigation, according to The Press and Journal.

In a letter to swim clubs across the country, Lowe said that all activity under Forres Bluefins has been suspended indefinitely.

“Scottish Swimming has been supporting Forres Bluefins SC for a number of weeks in the resolution of a number of concerns that have been raised within the club,” Lowe said.

“During the process of managing these concerns, it appears there exist some club governance matters that require urgent attention in meeting the constitutional and compliance standards expected of clubs as members of SASA (Scottish Amateur Swimming Association).

“In supporting the club, Scottish Swimming have been attempting to seek clarity over the membership status of committee members and those performing regulated roles within the club.

“After repeated requests over a number of weeks, this information has not been forthcoming.

“In addition, I have been made aware of further information that suggests the club has been allowing training activity to be delivered by individuals who are neither members of the club, nor properly qualified or PVG (Protecting Vulnerable Groups) checked. This is not acceptable.

“Our role as the governing body is to ensure that members can participate in safe, well-regulated environments, the basic standards of which are set out within the club model constitution and subsequent mandatory areas for compliance.

“This not only brings into question the club’s ability to ensure its members are being provided with a safe and enjoyable experience, but it also means that the basic governance requirements are not being met and the insurance cover for any of the club’s activities or its members therefore becomes null and void.

“In this circumstance, I must advise that there is little option but to place the club under a period of temporary suspension from any and all activities within the sport until matters have been satisfactorily addressed.”

Scottish Swimming says the suspension will only be lifted once it is satisfied that the club has met its criteria.

As of Nov. 17, the club has not mentioned its suspended status on its website.

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About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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