1.01 The name of the Society is “THE BRITISH COLUMBIA RUGBY UNION”, hereinafter also referred to as the Union.
The purposes of the Society are:
2.01 To grow, develop and manage the sport of Rugby in the Province of British Columbia.
2.02 To undertake any other roles, functions, responsibilities or actions to best serve the sport of Rugby in the Province of British Columbia.
1. A Player, Club or Sub-Union (Appellant) may appeal to the Appeal Committee from a decision of the Discipline Committee; or from a decision of the Competition Committee that is appealable per the Competition Committee rules. Any appeal must be lodged with the British Columbia Rugby Union (“BCRU”) office or its nominated officer within 7 days of the date on which the decision of the Discipline Committee or Competition Committee has been notified.
2. An appeal shall be deemed to have been lodged when a notice of appeal is received by the BCRU office together with any required deposit referred to in 4 below.
3. The notice of appeal shall be in writing from the Appellant or a representative of the Appellant lodging the appeal and shall specify:
(a) The name of the Appellant lodging the appeal;
(b) The decision appealed against;
(c) The specific grounds of the appeal.
4. Each notice of appeal shall be accompanied by a deposit of $200.00. In the event of a required deposit not being paid, the appeal shall be deemed to be abandoned, save that the Appeal Committee Chair shall have power to extend the time for payment of the deposit.
5. On the lodgment of the appeal the BCRU office shall make available to the Appeal Committee the record of the proceedings before the Discipline Committee or the relevant minutes of the Competition Committee.
6. An Appeal Committee shall have power to conduct and regulate the appeal proceedings as it sees fit having regard to the circumstances of the case.
7. The Appeal Committee shall at its discretion be entitled, in exceptional circumstances, to conduct a de novo hearing. Ordinarily, however, appeals will be heard based on the record of the decision by the Discipline or Competition Committee and the evidence received and considered by that Committee. Also, in exceptional circumstances and at the discretion of the Appeal Committee, a combination of a de novo hearing and appeal on the record may be applied. In determining the basis on which an appeal is to be conducted the Appeal Committee shall have regard to the following principles:
(a) It will only be in exceptional circumstances that a de novo hearing in whole or part will be adopted on appeal.
(b) The evidential assessment of the Discipline Committee at first instance should not be overturned save as in circumstances where central findings of fact made by the Discipline Committee are clearly wrong.
(c) A de novo hearing in whole or part would ordinarily only be appropriate where:
(i) Further evidence is available and such further evidence was not, on full and proper enquiry, available at the time of the first instance hearing; and/or
(ii) the record and/or evidence received and submitted at the first instance hearing is unclear and/or the record is otherwise defective. Where the Appellant appeals against the sanction, the Appellant may request that the Appeal Committee review the sanction without the need for a personal hearing. The Appeal Committee may also determine that a personal hearing is not required in relation to any appeal but if he/she so wishes, the Appellant always has the right to appear and make representations in all cases or alternatively he may make representations by telephone and/or in writing.
8. Subject to 7 above, the Appeal Committee Chair shall be entitled as he sees fit to deal with pre hearing procedural and/or evidential matters as may be applicable without reference to other members of Appeal Committees and may convene a pre-hearing conference for the purposes of giving directions for the hearing and clarification of the procedures. The Appeal Committee Chair may require any person to attend the hearing as a witness.
9. The Appeal Committee Chair may delegate his authority to a member of the Appeal Panel.
10. The Appeal Committee shall set a time, date and place for the hearing of the appeal which information shall be communicated by the BCRU office to the Appellant who has lodged the appeal. The Appellant will at that time also be notified of the names of the Appeal Committee Members and the fact that pending appeal, unless the decision is stayed per 10 below, the Player is not eligible to play the game save always that where a Player’s suspension expires when his appeal is pending the Player will be eligible to play forthwith. The Appeal Committee may choose to conduct appeal proceedings by telephone conference call or may allow participants to participate in appeal proceedings by telephone conference call.
11. Prior to an Appeal hearing, the Appeal Committee Chair, or when the Appeal Committee has convened, the Appeal Committee, shall have the right, at their sole discretion, to stay the decision under appeal where in either case they determine that not doing so would significantly prejudice the Appellant, pending the completion of the Appeal Hearing.
12. If a Member of the Appeal Committee is unable or unwilling, for whatever reason, to hear the appeal, then the Appeal Committee Chair may, at his absolute discretion:
(a) Appoint a replacement; or
(b) Appoint a new Appeal Committee, or
(c) Allow the remaining members of the Appeal Committee to hear the appeal.
13. Appeal Committees shall be entitled to call on experts to provide specialist advice, including legal advice.
14. An appeal should, where practicable, be heard within 14 days of its lodgment.
15. The Appeal Committee shall have power to postpone or adjourn the hearing of an appeal.
16. In any appeal, the Appeal Committee may direct that the BCRU, the Discipline Committee or the Competition Committee be represented. If so, the BCRU shall appear by representative at the hearing of the appeal in such capacity as the Appeal Committee requires, to provide assistance to the Appeal Committee in the discharge of its duties.
17. The Appellant may be represented before the Appeal Committee by a representative and/or legal counsel.
18. Where any question of fact arises on an appeal before the Appeal Committee it may be determined by reference to the record of proceedings before the Discipline Committee. However, the Appeal Committee, in its discretion, may rehear or receive written evidence in respect of the whole or any part of the evidence given before the Discipline Committee, as it considers appropriate.
19. The Appeal Committee shall have full discretionary power to hear and receive such further evidence on an appeal as it thinks fit. Ordinarily, such evidence would only be accepted where it can be established that such evidence was not, on full and proper enquiry, available at the time of the original hearing. The Appeal Committee shall be entitled to receive such evidence as it thinks fit, notwithstanding the evidence may not be legally admissible.
20. If in its discretion, an Appeal Committee admits further evidence at a hearing, there shall be no cross-examination of witnesses except to the extent allowed by the Appeal Committee.
21. In any case where a witness required by the Appeal Committee refuses or fails to attend before the Appeal Committee, the Appeal Committee may decide whether or not to allow the evidence of that witness to be given in any other form.
22. The Appeal Committee shall be entitled to determine whether witnesses who give evidence may be in the room in which the appeal is being heard prior to or after giving their evidence.
23. Save where the Appeal Committee decides to hear the entire case de novo (in which circumstances the applicable first instance standards and burdens shall apply), the Appellant shall have the burden of proving that the decision being challenged should be overturned or varied.
24. The Appeal Committee’s deliberations on its decision shall take place in private.
25. A decision of an Appeal Committee shall be valid if taken by at Members of an Appeal Committee may abstain from any decision. When an Appeal Committee has an even number of Members and the Members of such Committee are unable to come to a unanimous or majority decision, then the Chairman of the Appeal Committee shall have the casting vote.
26. In exercising its jurisdiction, an Appeal Committee shall have power to:
(a) Dismiss the appeal, quash, vary or increase any decision and/or penalty appealed against; and/or
(b) Order that the whole or any part of a deposit be refunded; and/or
(c) Take any other steps that it considers necessary to deal justly with the appeal.
28. The decision of the Appeal Committee shall be advised to the parties as soon as practicable after the conclusion of the hearing and shall be final and binding on notification to the Appellant, his representative, if any, or his sub-Union. Where it considers it appropriate, the Appeal Committee may deliver a short oral decision at the conclusion of the hearing (with its reasons to be put in writing and communicated to the parties at a later date) or it may reserve its decision.
29. Relevant parties heard by the Appeal Committee shall be entitled to a copy of the Appeal Committee’s written decision which shall be provided by the Appeal Committee as soon as practicable after it is available.
30. In all proceedings before Appeal Committees, referees and/or touch judges may only give evidence of fact, not opinion.
31. The standard of proof on all questions to be determined by the Appeal Committee shall be the balance of probabilities.
32. Procedures or proceedings under this policy or any decision of a Discipline Committee or Competition Committee shall not be quashed or held invalid by reason only of any defect, irregularity, omission or other technicality unless such defect, irregularity, omission or technicality raises a material doubt as to the reliability of the findings or decisions of a Discipline Committee or Competition Committee or results in a miscarriage of justice.
33. No member of an Appeal Committee should comment to the media on a decision of that committee. The President of the BCRU may release a copy of a decision to the media when it is available; or if a full written decision is not immediately available, release to the media a brief resume of a decision.
34. In respect of any matter not provided for in this Regulation the Appeal Committee Chair or the Appeal Committee shall make any decision it deems appropriate according to general principles of natural justice and fairness.
35. The Appeal Committee, prior to a hearing or at any stage during a hearing, may amend the offence for which the Player or Person has been Ordered Off or cited unless, having regard to the circumstances of the case, such amendment cannot be made without causing injustice.
Code of Conduct
1. Policy Objective
3. Application and Authority
4. Policy Statement
5. Key Principles
5.4 Inclusion for all
6.1 Directors, Committee Members, Employees
6.3 Team Managers, Athletic Therapists & Medical Support Personnel
6.6 Parents and Guardians
7. Breaches and Complaints
8. Disciplinary Action
10. Revision and Approval
11. Contact Us
1. Policy Objective
The BC Rugby Code of Conduct aims to provide a safe, positive and inclusive environment within BC Rugby and all of BC Rugby’s programs, competitions, events and activities.
In addition to the definitions included in the BC Rugby Bylaws, as amended from time to time, the following definitions apply to this Code of Conduct:
- Appellant – the Individual, or their representative, who is appealing a decision.
- Complainant – any Individual or member of the public who lodges a formal complaint in accordance with this document.
- Employee – any person receiving wages for work with BC Rugby, where wages includes salaries, commissions or money paid or payable by BC Rugby to any person for work, but does not include allowances, grants or expenses.
- Harassment – any comment or conduct directed towards an individual or group, which is offensive, abusive, racist, sexist, degrading or malicious. Types of behaviour that constitute harassment include, but are not limited to:
- written or verbal bullying, abuse, threats or outbursts;
- the display of visual material which is offensive or which one ought to know is offensive in the circumstances;
- unwelcome remarks, jokes, comments, innuendo or taunts;
- leering or other suggestive or obscene gestures;
- condescending or patronizing behaviour which is intended to undermine self-esteem, diminish performance or adversely affect working conditions;
- practical jokes which cause awkwardness or embarrassment, endanger a person’s safety or negatively affect performance;
- any form of hazing where hazing is defined as ‘any potentially humiliating, degrading, abusive or dangerous activity expected of a junior- or lower-ranking player by a more senior or higher-ranked player, which does not contribute to either player’s positive development, but is required to be accepted as part of a team, regardless of the junior/lower-ranking player’s willingness to participate. This includes, but is not limited to, any activity, no matter how traditional or seemingly benign, that sets apart or alienates any teammate based on class, number of years on the team or athletic ability;
- behaviours such as those described above that are not directed towards a specific individual or group but have the same effect of creating a negative or hostile environment; and
- retaliation or threats of retaliation against an individual who reports harassment to BC Rugby.
- Individual – any Individual Member as defined in the BC Rugby Bylaws, as well as those employed by, or engaged in activities with BC Rugby including, but not limited to, players, coaches, managers, officials, volunteers, parents, guardians, administrators, committee members, and directors and officers of BC Rugby.
- Respondent – any Individual about whom a complaint has been submitted to BC Rugby with respect to either an alleged breach of this Code of Conduct or a subsequent appeal regarding a decision made in relation to an alleged breach.
- Sexual Harassment – any unwelcome sexual comments, sexual advances, requests for sexual favours, or conduct of a sexual nature. Types of behaviour that constitute sexual harassment include, but are not limited to:
- sexist jokes;
- display of sexually offensive material;
- sexually degrading words used to describe a person;
- inquiries or comments about a person’s sex life;
- unwelcome sexual flirtations, advances or propositions; and
- unwanted physical contact including, but not limited to, touching, pinching, poking, slapping, hugging or kissing.
- Workplace – any place where business or work-related activities are conducted.
- Workplace Harassment – any vexatious comments or conduct against a worker in a Workplace – a comment or conduct that is known to ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome. Workplace Harassment should not be confused with legitimate, reasonable management actions that are part of the normal work function, including measures to correct performance deficiencies, such as placing someone on performance improvement plan, or imposing discipline for Workplace infractions. Types of behaviour that constitute Workplace Harassment include, but are not limited to:
- offensive or intimidating phone calls or emails;
- displaying or circulating offensive pictures, photographs or materials in printed or electronic form;
- psychological abuse;
- sexual harassment;
- intimidating words or conduct (offensive jokes or innuendos); and
- words or actions which are known or should reasonably be known to be offensive, embarrassing, humiliating or demeaning.
- Workplace violence – the exercise of physical force by a person against a worker, in a Workplace, that causes or could cause physical injury to the worker; an attempt to exercise physical force against a worker, in a Workplace, that could cause physical injury to the worker; or a statement or behaviours that it is reasonable for a worker to interpret as a threat to exercise physical force against the worker, in a Workplace, that could cause physical injury to that worker. Types of behaviour that constitute Workplace Harassment include, but are not limited to:
- verbal threats to attack a worker;
- sending to or leaving threatening notes or emails for a worker;
- making threatening physical gestures to a worker;
- wielding a weapon in a Workplace; and
- hitting, pinching or unwanted touching of a worker.
3. Application and Authority
3.1 In accordance with BC Rugby’s Bylaws, this Code of Conduct applies to any Member of BC Rugby and any Director or Officer of BC Rugby. Additionally, this Code of Conduct applies to all Employees, provincial and program coaches, provincial team managers and athletic therapists, contractors, volunteers and interns of BC Rugby.
3.2 This Code applies to all Individuals’ conduct during and involvement with BC Rugby business, teams, programs, competitions, events and activities including, but not limited to, matches, practices, training camps, workshops, conferences, any travel associated with BC Rugby activities, teams and competitions, the BC Rugby office environment and any meetings concerning BC Rugby business.
3.3 Any Individual who violates this Code may be subject to discipline in accordance with BC Rugby’s Bylaws, Section 12.
3.4 Any Employee of BC Rugby found to have violated this Code will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action in accordance with the Employee’s employment agreement.
4. Policy Statement
BC Rugby is committed to leading by example, treating all individuals with respect and consideration, and providing an organization, community and environment that is welcoming, safe and supportive for all Individuals to enjoy Rugby.
5. Key Principles
Safety is the top priority at all times. All Individuals have a responsibility to:
- enhance the safe play of Rugby by instilling and upholding a culture of safety, injury prevention and fair play;
- understand the symptoms of concussion, and support the disclosure of those symptoms;
- refrain from consuming alcohol, any tobacco products or recreational drugs while participating in BC Rugby programs, activities or competitions; and
- in the case of individual adults who meet the legal drinking age, take reasonable steps to manage the responsible and safe consumption of alcohol at events associated with BC Rugby.
Integrity is a core value of Rugby and is upheld through honesty, diligence and fair play. All Individuals will:
- consistently demonstrate the spirit of sportsmanship, sport leadership and ethical behaviour;
- ensure adherence to the Laws of the Game and the spirit of those laws;
- promote and uphold Rugby as a Clean Sport by abstaining from the promotion, endorsement, supply or use of non-medical drugs or the use of performance-enhancing drugs. More specifically, BC Rugby adopts and adheres to the Canadian Policy Against Doping in Sport. Any infraction under the Canadian Policy Against Doping in Sport shall be considered an infraction of this Code and may be subject to further disciplinary action. BC Rugby will respect any penalty enacted pursuant to a breach of the Canadian Anti-Doping Program, whether imposed by BC Rugby or any other recognized sport organization;
- adhere to all federal, provincial, municipal and host country laws; and
- comply, at all times, with BC Rugby’s Bylaws, policies, procedures, rules and regulations, as adopted and amended from time to time.
Respect is at the heart of our sport and the Rugby community should have a sense of pride for upholding this core value. All Individuals have a responsibility to:
- maintain and enhance the dignity and self-esteem of individuals by:
- treating all individuals fairly and respectfully regardless of body type, physical characteristics, athletic ability, gender, ancestry, ethnic or racial origin, nationality, national origin, sexual orientation, age, marital status, religion, religious belief, political belief, disability or economic status; and
- focusing comments or criticism appropriately and avoiding public criticism of players, coaches, officials, organizers, volunteers, employees or any other Individual Members.
- refrain from any behaviour that constitutes Harassment or online Harassment;
- refrain from any behavior that constitutes Sexual Harassment;
- refrain from the use of power or authority in an attempt to coerce another person to engage in inappropriate activities; and
- respect the property of others and not willfully cause damage.
5.4 Inclusion for All
Rugby has the power to build communities through camaraderie, teamwork and loyalty which transcends cultural, geographic, political and religious differences. All individuals have a responsibility to:
- promote the sport of Rugby in the most constructive and positive manner possible;
- proactively invite and include all people, regardless of age, athletic ability, gender, ancestry, ethnic or racial origin, nationality, national origin, sexual orientation, marital status, religion, religious belief, political belief, disability or economic status;
- upholding safety for all as the top priority, make or provide modifications to make BC Rugby competitions, programs and events accessible for disabled players, coaches, officials;
- upholding safety for all as the top priority, make or provide modifications or exemptions to facilitate mixed-gender play; and
- upholding integrity as the top priority, make or provide modifications or exemptions to facilitate the inclusion of players from lower socio-economic households.
As set out elsewhere in this document, all Individuals are accountable to this Code of Conduct. However, due to the nature of various positions within BC Rugby, the following have additional responsibilities.
6.1 Directors, Committee Members and Employees
Directors, Committee Members and Employees are the privileged keepers of our great sport and must uphold the highest standards of ethical behaviour. Therefore, BC Rugby’s Board of Directors, Committee Members and Employees shall:
- provide leadership by demonstrating and promoting the values of Rugby and the key principles of the Code of Conduct through their decisions, actions and behaviour. Their behaviour must build and inspire the community’s trust and confidence in BC Rugby;
- function primarily as a Director, Member of a Committee or an Employee of BC Rugby, and not act with self-interest or as a representative of any other organization;
- act with honesty and integrity and conduct themselves in a manner consistent with the Values of Rugby and the responsibilities of BC Rugby business;
- conduct themselves openly, professionally, responsibly, lawfully and in good faith in service of BC Rugby’s Constitutional Purpose;
- behave with decorum appropriate to both circumstance and position, and to be fair, equitable, considerate and honest in all dealings with others;
- exercise the degree of care, diligence, thoughtfulness, skill and time commitment required in the performance of their duties pursuant to the laws under which BC Rugby is incorporated;
- conform to and uphold the Bylaws and Policies approved by BC Rugby, in particular this Code of Conduct, Conflict of Interest Policy and Confidentiality Policy;
- refrain from any behaviour that constitutes Workplace Harassment; and
- Refrain from any behaviour that constitutes Workplace Violence.
Coaches have many responsibilities. The coach-player relationship is a privileged one and plays a critical role in the personal, mental and athletic development of the player. Coaches must understand and respect the inherent power imbalance that exists in this relationship and must be extremely careful not to abuse it, consciously or unconsciously. Coaches will:
- ensure a safe training and playing environment by selecting activities, training equipment and establishing controls that are suitable for the age, gender, body type, experience, ability and fitness level of the involved players;
- maintain World Rugby’s ‘Concussion Management for the General Public’ certification, educate players, and their parents/guardians, on the symptoms of concussion, encourage and facilitate the reporting of any symptoms of concussion, and adhere to the “Recognize and Remove, if in doubt, sit them out”’ protocol at all training sessions, training camps and matches;
- act in the best interest of the player’s development as a whole person, particularly their formal education;
- at all times display respect towards opponents and officials, both in victory and defeat, setting an example and educating players on the values of Rugby; and
- not engage in an intimate or sexual relationship with a player under 18 years old, or an intimate or sexual relationship with a player over the age of 18 if the coach is in a position of power, trust or authority over that player.
6.3 Team Managers, Athletic Therapists & Medical Support Personnel
Team managers, athletic therapists and medical support personnel have particular responsibilities to ensure the safety and well-being of Players. Team managers, athletic therapists and medical support personnel will:
- act in the best interest of the player’s physical and mental well-being;
- understand and respect the inherent power imbalance of the coach-player relationship and, as appropriate, protect the player’s privacy;
- maintain World Rugby’s ‘Concussion Management for the General Public’ certification, educate players, and their parents/guardians, on the symptoms of concussion, encourage and facilitate the reporting of any symptoms of concussion, and adhere to the “Recognize and Remove, if in doubt, sit them out” protocol at all training sessions, training camps and matches; and
- not engage in an intimate or sexual relationship with a player under 18 years old, or an intimate or sexual relationship with a player over the age of 18 if the team manager, athletic therapist or medical support personnel is in a position of power, trust or authority over that player.
Officials have a significant role in the prevention and management of injuries and concussion. Officials will:
- ensure a safe playing environment by enforcing and communicating the enforcement of the Laws of the Game appropriate to the age, gender, body type, experience, ability and fitness level of the involved players;
- maintain World Rugby’s ‘Concussion Management for the General Public’ certification and enforce the ‘Recognize and Remove, if in doubt, sit them out’ protocol at all BC Rugby competitions, tournaments and events.
Players have responsibilities on and off the pitch. Players will:
- compete and participate in a spirit of fair play, honesty and respect for the opponent, the officials and the supporters;
- compete and participate within the Laws of the Game and any rules of competitions or tournament rules;
- at all times show and uphold respect for coaches and team managers and show appreciation for their contribution to the sport of Rugby; and
- at all times show and uphold respect for officials and show appreciation for their contribution to the sport of Rugby.
6.6 Parents and Guardians
Parents and guardians have additional responsibilities, particularly as it relates to ensuring the safe and fair play of Rugby. Parents and guardians of players will:
- instill a spirit of fair, positive play and sportsmanship in their rugby-playing children;
- at all times show and uphold respect for the child’s coach and team manager, the opponents, the officials and other supporters;
- continually inform the relevant coach, team manager, club official and/or athletic therapist if your child has been injured, is ill, concussed, or shows any symptoms of concussion; and
- inform the relevant coach, team manager, club official and/or athletic therapist if your child has any medical or health condition, as well as any sensory, intellectual or physical disability that may impact their health, ability or enjoyment while participating in Rugby.
7. Breaches and Complaints
7.1 All Individuals shall abide by the requirements of BC Rugby’s Bylaws and this Code of Conduct, and shall endeavour to resolve disputes in good faith.
7.2 Any complaints concerning a violation or breach of this Code of Conduct must be submitted in writing to the Chair of the Discipline Committee within three (3) months of the alleged breach or last alleged breach where there is a continuing breach. If the Chair of the Discipline Committee is the subject of, or is implicated in a complaint, then the complaint shall be addressed to the CEO or the President of BC Rugby. Written complaints submitted should contain full and exact details of the incident(s), including date, time and/or duration, location, full names of the persons involved, names of any witnesses, and other pertinent details of the alleged breach of this Code of Conduct.
- Upon receipt of the complaint under Section 7.2, the Chair of the Discipline Committee shall inform the CEO of BC Rugby and shall assemble an independent and impartial investigative panel comprised of one or more persons to investigate the complaint.
- The investigative panel will conduct a preliminary assessment of the complaint, at the conclusion of which the investigative panel may determine to continue the investigation or make a written recommendation to the Chair of the Discipline Committee that the complaint be dismissed as unfounded, beyond the jurisdiction of this Code of Conduct or unlikely to succeed. The investigative panel will determine when to notify the Respondent of the complaint and any investigation but it must be done in a timely manner in the circumstances.
7.5 If the investigative panel determines to continue with the investigation, then the investigative panel shall in a timely manner:
- conduct an investigation of the complaint in a manner that accords with the principles of due process and natural justice;
- provide an investigation update to the Chair of the Discipline Committee within thirty (30) days of receipt of the complaint;
- provide a written, confidential report of the findings of the investigation, including findings as to whether there has been, on a balance of probabilities, a breach of this Code of Conduct, to the Chair of the Discipline Committee and the CEO, as applicable, and to the Complainant and Respondent;
- provide recommendations in the report as to the appropriate resolution of the complaint, which recommendations may include:
- dismissal of the complaint; or
- sanction of the Respondent for misbehaviour or a breach of this Code of Conduct, including but not limited to suspension from play or probation;
- public censure of the Respondent for misbehaviour or a breach of this Code of Conduct;
- a requirement that an individual apologize to any person adversely affected by a breach of this Code of Conduct;
- counselling of an Individual; or
- such other measures as are deemed appropriate in the discretion of the investigative panel; and
- where the investigative panel finds that a Director, Committee Member or Employee has breached this Code of Conduct, the Panel may additionally recommend to:
- counsel the Director, Committee Member or Employee;
- terminate the Director’s or Committee Member’s appointment;
- terminate the Employee’s employment; or
- implement such other measures as deemed appropriate in the discretion of the investigative panel.
7.6 The Discipline Committee will not be bound to accept all or any of the recommendations of the report prepared by the investigative panel. The Discipline Committee may make such decisions as it deems appropriate in its discretion.
7.7 All complaints shall be dealt with by the Discipline Committee, but nothing herein stops a Voting Member or Associate Member from undertaking its own investigation of alleged misconduct, and from imposing its own sanctions where appropriate on its own Individual Members.
7.8 BC Rugby will retain all reports prepared under Section 7.5
7.9 Any complaints concerning a violation of World Rugby Regulation 17 must be submitted in writing to the Chair of the Discipline Committee.
8. Disciplinary Action
8.1 Any individual found to have breached this Code of Conduct may be subject to disciplinary action, which may include reprimand, suspension or expulsion from BC Rugby and/or BC Rugby’s Board, Committees, competitions, events, programs, squads or teams.
8.2 BC Rugby may determine that a particular alleged breach or breaches of this Code of Conduct are of such seriousness to warrant suspension of the Individual Member or Individual pending a hearing and a decision of the Discipline Committee.
8.3 At the sole discretion of BC Rugby, a conviction for a Criminal Code offense may result in expulsion from BC Rugby and/or removal from BC Rugby teams, competitions, programs, activities and events as well as banning from any future membership or involvement with BC Rugby.
9.1 Any Individual who wishes to appeal a decision of the Discipline Committee may appeal to the BC Rugby Appeals Committee.
9.2 An Individuals who wishes to appeal a decision of the Discipline Committee has seven (7) days from the date on which the Individual receives notice of the decision to submit in writing (via email) to the BC Rugby CEO and/or President the following:
- notice of the intention to appeal;
- contact information and status of the Appellant;
- name of the respondent and any affected parties;
- date the Appellant was advised of the decision that the Appellant is appealling;
- a copy of the decision being appealed, or description of decision if written document is not available;
- grounds for the appeal as set out in Section 9.3; and
- An administration fee of two hundred dollars ($200) payable to BC Rugby.
An Individual who wishes to appeal a decision of the Discipline Committee and has submitted the foregoing within the seven (7) day period shall then submit in writing (via email) to the BC Rugby CEO and/or President the following within 30 days from the date on which the Individual receives notice of the decision of the Discipline Committee:
- detailed reasons for the appeal;
- all evidence that supports these grounds; and
- requested remedy or remedies.
9.3 An appeal must be based on one or more of the following grounds:
- the Discipline Committee made a decision outside of its authority or jurisdiction;
- the Discipline Committee failed to follow its own procedures or the procedures set out in this Code of Conduct;
- the Discipline Committee breached natural justice; or
- the Discipline Committee made a decision that was unreasonable in the circumstances.
9.4 In any appeal of the decision of the Discipline Committee, the Appellant bears the burden of proving that there are sufficient grounds for appeal as described in 9.3 section of this Code of Conduct.
10. Revision and Approval
This Code of Conduct shall be reviewed by the Governance Committee and the Chief Executive Officer on a regular basis, who may each recommend revisions to the BC Rugby Board of Directors for their approval.
11. Contact Us
All feedback, comments, requests for support and other communications relating to this Code of Conduct should be directed to: email@example.com.
In accordance with BC Rugby’s Bylaws, this Code of Conduct applies to any Member of BC Rugby and any Director or Officer of BC Rugby. Additionally, it applies to all Individuals’ conduct during or involvement with BC Rugby business, teams, programs, competitions, events and activities. Any Individual who violates this Code may be subject to discipline in accordance with BC Rugby’s Bylaws, Section 12.
Effective July 1, 2014
Rugby Union is a sport that involves physical contact. Any sport involving physical contact has inherent dangers. It is very important that Players play the game in accordance with the Laws of the Game and be mindful of the safety of themselves and others. It is the responsibility of those who coach or teach the game to ensure that Players are prepared in a manner which ensures compliance with the Laws of the Game and in accordance with safe practices.
It is the duty of the Referee to apply fairly all the Laws of the Game in every match except when an experimental law has been authorized by the IRB Council. It is the duty of the Unions to ensure that the Game at every level is conducted in accordance with disciplined and sporting behaviour. This principle cannot be upheld solely by the Referee; its observance also rests on Unions, affiliated bodies and clubs.
1.1 The Board of the British Columbia Rugby Union (BCRU) delegates the primary responsibility for discipline issues to the BCRU Discipline Committee (BCRU-DC) in accordance with Section 13.03 of the By-Laws of the BCRU.
2. Powers of the BCRU-DC:
2.1 The powers of the BCRU-DC are as outlined in Part 13 – Discipline of the By-Laws of the BCRU.
2.2 Allegations of violations of the BCRU Code of Conduct and the BCRU Harassment Policy are within the jurisdiction of the BCRU-DC and may be heard by the committee.
Note: Please refer to the BCRU Code of Conduct and the BCRU Harassment Policy.
3. Composition of the BCRU-DC:
3.1 The BCRU-DC shall be chaired by the BCRU Chairman of Discipline.
3.2 The BCRU-DC shall have as representatives of the Discipline Committee of the following Sub Unions: FVRU, VIRU, and VRU.
3.3 The President of the BCRRS (or their delegate) shall be a member of the BCRU-DC.
3.4 The BCRU Executive Director shall appoint two independent persons as members of the Discipline Committee.
4. Conflict of Interest:
4.1 A member of the BCRU-DC is considered to be in a conflict of interest if the individual appearing at a hearing is a member of the BCRU-DC member’s club.
4.2 The BCRU-DC member will not participate in resolving any case in which he/she has a conflict of interest.
Note: Please refer to the BCRU Conflict of Interest Guidelines.
5. Delegation of Authority:
5.1 The BCRU-DC will deal directly with discipline in accordance with Section 13.01 of the By-Laws of the BCRU and specifically with discipline reports that arise from games played in 15 or 7 Player competitions within the BCRU Premier Division, 1st Division, 2nd Division, 3rd Division, U-21/Collegiate Division and by Sub Union Representative Teams in BCRU sanctioned competitions.
5.2 The BCRU-DC may delegate to a Sub Union Discipline Committee (SU-DC) the power to deal with discipline cases arising from lower division games and competitions in its jurisdiction.
5.3 The BCRU-DC shall review all cases heard by a SU-DC and has the authority to amend any orders made by a SU-DC.
5.4 Subject to Article 22, the BCRU-DC delegates discipline matters arising from a Summer Seven Aside tournament to the discipline officer appointed for such tournament.
6. Discipline Meetings:
6.1 This Discipline Policy sets out the procedures for dealing with the following Discipline matters:
- When a Player is Ordered Off the playing enclosure;
- When a Player is cited for an act or acts of Illegal and/or Foul Play;
- When a Player has been Temporarily Suspended three times in accordance with Article 6.4; and
- When an act or acts of Misconduct may have been committed by a Union, Club Player or Person.
6.2 For the purposes of this Policy, Illegal and/or Foul Play means a breach or breaches of Law 10 of the Laws of the Game and/or a breach or breaches of Law 3.11(c), Law 4.5(c) and Law 6.A.5.
6.3 A Player is Ordered Off when he is sent off the playing enclosure permanently by the Referee and can take no further part in the Match in which he was Ordered Off.
6.4 A Player is Temporarily Suspended when he is cautioned in a Match by the Referee and temporarily sent off the playing enclosure by the Referee for a period of ten minutes playing time which is spent in the so-called sin bin.
6.5 A Player who is Temporarily Suspended three times within a 12 month period commencing June 1st of a particular year and ending May 31st of the following year, will be deemed to have been Ordered Off upon the conclusion of the game in which the third Temporary Suspension occurred.
6.6 An act of Misconduct means a breach of the BCRU Code of Conduct which occurs outside the Playing Enclosure.
7. Initial Procedures Ordering Off:
Where a Player in a Match is Ordered Off the Referee shall, within 48 hours of the completion of the Match, provide a written report of the incident to the BCRU Office. If a Player is Ordered Off the playing enclosure as a result of the intervention of a Assistant Referee, the Assistant Referee shall also deliver a written report to the BCRU Office within 48 hours of the completion of the Match.
7.1 Form 1 (Appendix 2(a) of this Policy) shall be used by the Referee for the purposes of a report under this Article 7.
7.2 Form 2 (Appendix 2(b) of this Policy) shall be used by a Assistant Referee for the purpose of a report under this Article 7.
7.3 Reports prepared by Referees and/or and Assistant Referee when a Player has been Ordered Off should contain the following information:
(a) the date of the Match, the venue and the teams participating;
(b) the name of the Player Ordered Off and his team;
(c) the circumstances in which the Player was Ordered Off;
(d) the reason for the Player being Ordered Off; and
(e) any other information the Referee (or Assistant Referee where applicable) considers relevant.
7.4 The Player Ordered Off shall be supplied with a copy of the Referee’s report and, where applicable, the Assistant Referee’s as soon as reasonably practicable and advised:
(a) of the date, place and time of the Discipline Committee hearing at which the Discipline proceedings will be heard;
(b) that the Player will be required to attend in person or by telephone at the hearing;
(c) that if the Player is unable to appear at the Discipline Committee as notified, he should advise the BCRU Office forthwith;
(d) that the Player is entitled to adduce evidence and make submissions and be represented by his Union and/or a legal advisor; and
(e) the Player is not eligible to play pending resolution of the case.
7.5 Where possible, notice to the Ordered Off Player under this Article shall be given in writing. It shall be sufficient compliance with this Article if a copy of the Referee’s report and where applicable, the Assistant Referee’s report and notice of the information required in Article 7.3 are sent by email to the member’s club. Where a Player is deemed to have been Ordered Off under Article 7.5, it shall be sufficient compliance with this Article if notice of the particulars of the three Temporary Suspensions are sent by email to the member’s club.
8.1 Although the BCRU-DC does not want to receive vexatious or nuisance citings it will not condone acts contrary to the Laws of the Game that occur within the playing enclosure but may not have been detected by the match officials.
8.2 The BCRU-DC will accept a citing if it is submitted in writing to the office of the BCRU by a minimum of two individuals filing separate reports within 72 hours of a match or one person with admissible video evidence.
8.3 The citing complaint shall contain the following information:
(a) the date and place of the alleged Illegal and/or Foul Play;
(b) the name of the Player in respect of whom the complaint is made and the team he was playing for at the time of the alleged Illegal and/or Foul Play;
(c) the name of the opposing team; and
(d) full details of the alleged Illegal and/or Foul Play or misconduct including brief details of the evidence relied upon. Form 3 (Appendix 2(c) of this Policy) may be used for the purposes of making a citing complaint.
8.4 For purposes of the Discipline Policy, admissible video evidence shall mean, subject to the discretion of the Committee, video evidence of the incident giving rise to the complaint which provides unedited coverage for one minute both before and after the incident giving rise to the complaint. The Committee may, in its discretion, accept video evidence of shorter duration if it is satisfied that the evidence has significant probative value and is not unreasonably prejudicial to any parties having regard to the circumstances surrounding the incident.
8.5 The Discipline Committee shall forthwith obtain such information and reports in relation to the act or acts of Illegal and/or Foul Play subject to the citing complaint that it considers appropriate. All persons requested to provide reports and/or information shall co-operate with such requests and provide the reports and/or information as the case may be. Copies of the information and reports obtained shall be forwarded by the Discipline Committee to the Player and other parties that were provided with a copy of the citing complaint. The Discipline Committee Chair shall, as he or she considers appropriate, be entitled to deal with procedural applications and matters prior to the hearing.
8.6 The BCRU-DC shall review the written reports of the citing at the next regular meeting of the committee.
8.7 Should the BCRU-DC determine that a citing is vexatious or without merit the individuals filing the report shall be informed that the committee will take no further action in this matter.
8.8 Should the BCRU-DC determine that the citing is neither vexatious nor a nuisance complaint the individuals filing the reports and the person cited shall be informed that a hearing will be called to consider the matter.
8.9 The Player cited shall be supplied with a copy of the relevant reports and information, and video coverage of the incident, if available, by the Discipline Committee as soon as reasonably practicable and advised:
(a) of the date, place and time of the Discipline Committee hearing at which the Discipline proceedings will be heard;
(b) that the Player will be required to attend in person or by telephone at the hearing;
(c) that if the Player is unable to appear at the Discipline Committee hearing as notified, the Player should advise the Discipline Committee forthwith;
(d) that the Player is entitled to adduce evidence and make submissions and be represented by his Union and/or a legal advisor; and
(e) as to the Player’s eligibility to play pending resolution of the case.
8.10 At any hearing of a citing complaint, the Discipline Committee may require the individual who filed the citing to attend in person or via telephone conference and/or video link in order to present evidence and/or explain the basis upon which the citing complaint has been made.
8.11 In the interests of time and minimizing inconvenience, a Player who has been cited, and whose Discipline hearing is pending, can be required by the Discipline Committee, prior to the hearing, to supply it with full particulars of the case that will be presented on his behalf at the hearing.
8.12 Where a Player is the subject of a citing complaint, in the absence of a contrary determination from the Committee, he shall not be considered to have been Ordered Off. It will be open to the Committee, in extraordinary circumstances, to deem a Player who is cited to be considered Ordered Off, and thus immediately suspended, if the Committee is satisfied that having regard to the incident of complaint and the Committee’s preliminary view of possible sanction, such action is warranted. Wherever practicable, a citation compliant should be adjudicated within 10 days of the end of the game in which the alleged foul play that is the subject of the complaint occurred.
8.13 In circumstances where a Player(a) has not been cited within the time period specified in Article 8 as a result of either:
(a) mistaken identity; or
(b) the nature of the incident(s) concerned is such that further investigation is needed to identify the Player(s) alleged to have committed an act(s) of Illegal and/or Foul Play,
then a citing complaint may be validly made by the complainant Club notwithstanding the submission of the citing complaint after the expiry of the applicable time period specified herein. However, any citing complaint submitted pursuant to this provision shall be lodged as soon as reasonably practicable and in any event within a period of fourteen days from the conclusion of the applicable citing period.
8.14 The BCRU-DC shall determine, based on the evidence presented at the hearing, the course of action to be followed in the matter which may include the imposition of sanctions in accordance with these policies.
9.1 Referees’ reports that are the responsibility of the BCRU-DC should be filed with the BCRU office within 48 hours of a Player being ejected from a game.
9.2 Reports for consideration by the BCRU-DC should be faxed, e-mailed or hand delivered to the BCRU office.
9.3 If a report for consideration by the BCRU-DC is sent to a Sub Union Chair, he/she shall fax, e-mail or hand deliver it to the BCRU office immediately so it can be circulated to the BCRU-DC.
9.4 All Referees’ reports of cases delegated to a SU-DC shall be forwarded by the Sub Union to the BCRU-DC for information purposes only.
10. Determination of a Discipline Case:
10.1 Decisions of discipline committees are made on the balance of probabilities, not beyond a reasonable doubt.
10.2 Decisions of discipline committees are based on the examination of the facts. Extraneous opinions about those who come before the BCRU-DC are not germane to the process.
10.3 The fact that a Player may have been provoked into retaliation is no defense but may be considered when determining the sanction to be imposed.
10. 4 The fact that a Player has been provoked into foul play is no defense but may be considered when determining the sanction to be imposed.
10.5 The past record of a person appearing before the BCRU-DC may not be considered as to guilt but may be considered when determining the sanction to be imposed (see Article 14(a)).
11. Standard of Proof:
11.1 This Article relating to Standard of Proof has been prepared with Law 6.A.4 of the Laws of the Game in mind. It is essential to preserve the integrity of this Law and the Referee’s position as sole judge of fact and law during the Match. Any decision by a Referee during a Match cannot be affected by a ruling of the Discipline Committee. A distinction is drawn between the Referee’s decision on the field of play and reasons for the decision. This means that when after a Match the Discipline Committee consider the further Discipline consequences of an incident, where the Referee has already made a decision on the field in relation to that incident, the Discipline Committee may, nevertheless, enquire into the Referee’s reasons for that decision and the circumstances surrounding it.
11.2 In any case where the Discipline Committee considers an incident(s) of Illegal and/or Foul Play or alleged Illegal and/or Foul Play, it may decide to impose a sanction in accordance with the provisions of this policy, or in the case of an Ordering Off where the Discipline Committee is satisfied on the balance of probabilities that the Referee’s reasons for his decision were wrong take no further action.
11.3 In the case of an Ordering Off, the function of the Discipline Committee is to consider the circumstances of the case and determine what further sanction, if any, should be imposed on the Player. The Player Ordered Off may seek to show that the Referee’s reasons for his decision were wrong and the Discipline Committee may, subject always to Article 11.1, review the Referee’s reasons for the Ordering Off decision and the circumstances surrounding it. In any such case, the Discipline Committee shall not make a finding contrary to the Referee’s decision unless it is satisfied, on the balance of probabilities that the Referee’s reasons for his decision were wrong.
11.4 In the case of a citing, the function of the Discipline Committee shall be to review the case and determine whether on the balance of probabilities the Player concerned committed the act or acts of Illegal and/or Foul Play that are the subject of the citing complaint, provided that:
(a) In any case where the Discipline Committee is required to consider a citing complaint in respect of an incident where the Referee has made a decision on the field of play in relation to that incident, the Discipline Committee may review the Referee’s reasons for the decision and the circumstances surrounding it. In any such case, the Discipline Committee shall not make a finding contrary to the Referee’s decision unless it is satisfied on the balance of probabilities that the Referee’s reasons for his decision are wrong; and
(b) In any case where the Discipline Committee is required to consider an incident of Illegal and/or Foul Play or alleged Illegal and/or Foul Play which has not been the subject of a determination on the field of play by the Referee it shall not uphold the citing complaint unless it is satisfied on the balance of probabilities that the Player concerned committed the acts or acts of Illegal and/or Foul Play that are subject to the citing complaint.
12. Discipline Committee – Power to Regulate its Own Procedures:
12.1 The procedure of the Discipline Committee shall be as the Discipline Committee shall determine in each case and the Discipline Committee shall be entitled to depart from the procedures set out in Article 13. However, subject to the power to regulate its own procedures and depart from the procedures set out in Article 13, it shall:
(a) seek to conform generally with the procedures set out in Article 13;
(b) ensure that a Player subject to Discipline proceedings has a reasonable opportunity to be heard and to present his case;
(c) comply with the Standard of Proof provisions set out in Article 11; and
(d) ensure that for citing complaints made by a member club, such club has a representative in attendance at the hearing, failing which the case will be dismissed.
12.2 In any case, the Chair of the Discipline Committee, or his delegate, may convene a pre-hearing conference for the purposes of giving directions for the hearing and clarification of the procedures. Such conference may include any Player Ordered Off or cited or any club and/or their representative, Match Officials, and any other person or body whose participation is considered desirable.
12.3 The Discipline Committee shall endeavour to ensure that Discipline proceedings are heard in the presence of the club or Player who is the subject of the proceedings, but nothing in this Policy, or otherwise, shall prevent a Discipline Committee hearing and determining Discipline proceedings in the absence of the club or Player concerned where the club or Player does not attend the hearing. In such circumstances the Discipline Committee may take written representations made by or on behalf of the club or Player into account in making its decision.
13. Discipline Committee – General Procedures
13.1 A Player who is required to attend a hearing by a Discipline Committee shall be entitled to be represented at the hearing by an official of his Union, his club or other affiliated organization, or by legal counsel.
13.2 The Referee of the Match in which the Player is Ordered Off may be required by the Discipline Committee to attend the hearing of the Discipline Committee whether in person or via telephone conference and/or video link. Nothing in this Article shall prevent the Discipline Committee hearing and determining Discipline proceedings in the absence of the Referee and/or Assistant Referee.
13.3 In respect of cases involving the Ordering Off of a Player, the Discipline Committee shall ensure that, prior to the hearing, the Player Ordered Off has been supplied with, and has had a sufficient opportunity to consider, the Referee’s report and where applicable the report of the Assistant Referee, together with other evidence including (where available) video evidence. In respect of cases involving a citing complaint, the Discipline Committee shall ensure that prior to the hearing, the Player cited has been provided with and has had a sufficient opportunity to consider the information and reports of the incident.
13.4 The Discipline Committee, subject to Article 11.1, shall be entitled to receive such evidence and in such form as it thinks fit (including evidence in writing), notwithstanding the evidence may not be legally admissible and shall be entitled to attach such weight to that evidence as it/he sees fit.
13.5 Generally, the Discipline Committee shall apply the Best Evidence Rule. This means that first hand accounts from persons present at the hearing as to their observations of the incident in question should be preferred. Hearsay evidence may be accepted. However, caution will be exercised before hearsay evidence is accepted in preference to first hand evidence and generally less weight is likely to be given to hearsay evidence. Further, as a general rule, Discipline Committees should not permit the introduction of opinion evidence other than expert opinion evidence. Expert opinion evidence is only likely to be permitted when the evidence falls outside the every day knowledge of members of the Committee, for example, medical opinion.
13.6 In the event that the Discipline Committee accepts as of probative value video tape evidence it shall, if possible, be viewed without the sound or commentary associated with it being heard, save where the sound commentary includes the comments made by the Referee through his microphone in relation to the specific incident in question.
13.7 The Discipline Committee shall be entitled to determine whether witnesses that give evidence are able to remain in the room in which the hearing is being heard after their evidence has been given.
13.8 The Discipline Committee may direct the attendance, in person or by telephone conference, at the meeting of any Player Ordered Off or cited, and any witness. Where such a direction is given by the Discipline Committee it shall be the responsibility of the club, the Player or Person or witness concerned to ensure that it is complied with, notwithstanding any arrangements that may need to be made and/or altered. In any case where a direction given by the Discipline Committee is not complied with, the Discipline Committee may refuse to allow the evidence of the club, Player or Person or witness to be given in any other form.
13.9 Where evidence is given before the Discipline Committee there shall be no direct questioning of any witness, save by Discipline Committee members save where the Discipline Committee agrees otherwise. Questions may, however, be put to a witness through the Chairman of the Discipline Committee at the Chairman’s discretion.
13.10 The Discipline Committee shall be entitled to call on experts to provide specialist advice, including legal advice.
13.11 Unless it otherwise directs, the procedure of the Discipline Committee at a hearing will be as follows:
(a) the Chairman will explain the procedure to be followed;
(b) for cases involving Ordering Off, the Referee’s report and, where applicable, the Assistant Referee’s report will be read;
(c) the Player will be asked to confirm if he admits that he has committed an act or acts of Illegal and/or Foul Play;
(d) evidence from the Ordered Off Player, if he elects to give evidence, and from any witnesses to be called will be heard;
(e) final submissions will be heard; and
(f) a similar procedure subject to such modification as the Discipline Committee deems appropriate may be adopted at the discretion of the Discipline Committee with regard to cases involving citing however, the Player will be asked to confirm if he admits that he has committed an act or acts of Illegal and/or Foul Play.
13.12 For citing complaints, the club citing the Player must have a representative in attendance at the hearing to present the basis of the citing complaint and evidence in support.
13.13 The Player subject to the proceedings may admit the offence at any time in which case the Discipline Committee should proceed immediately to hear submissions as to the sanction (if any) to be imposed.
13.14 The Discipline Committee deliberations on its decision shall take place in private. A decision of a Discipline Committee shall be valid if taken by at least a simple majority of the Members of the Discipline Committee of those eligible to participate. No Member of a Discipline Committee may abstain from any decision subject to application of the conflict rules. Where a Discipline Committee has an even number of Members and the Members of such Discipline Committee are unable to come to a unanimous or majority decision, then the Chairman of the Discipline Committee shall have a casting vote.
13.15 Subject always to Article 11, the Discipline Committee shall, in the first instance, determine, its factual findings. Thereafter, as appropriate, it will reconvene and hear and consider evidence and submissions in relation to sanctions.
13.16 The Discipline Committee Chair shall, as he or she considers appropriate, be entitled to deal with any investigatory matters or procedural matters relating to a hearing.
13.17 The Discipline Committee shall have power to postpone or adjourn a hearing at which Discipline proceedings are to be heard.
14.1 When imposing sanctions, the Discipline Committee shall have regard to the IRB’s recommended penalties for Illegal and/or Foul Play set out in Appendix 1, with the exception that, in most cases, the IRB period of days/weeks shall be converted to games. This conversion reflects the variety of games played over a fixed time period in the various competitions of the BCRU and the nature of our year round season of league and tournament play.
14.2 As a general rule in reference to the IRB Recommended Sanctions, a suspension of one game is generally deemed equivalent to a period of seven days in the IRB Recommended Sanctions, as that is the average number of days between games for most teams in most competitions in British Columbia; however, this general interpretation rule is not intended to effectively reduce suspensions when a suspended Player’s club has no matches during the suspension period.
14.3 A suspension from any union makes an individual Player ineligible to play rugby in any other jurisdiction until such time as he/she has completed the penalty imposed by the first jurisdiction.
14.4 The Discipline Committee shall undertake an assessment of the seriousness of the Player’s conduct, which constitutes the offending and categorize the offence as being at the lower end, mid range or top end of the scale of seriousness in order to identify the appropriate entry point for consideration of a particular incident(s) where such incident(s) is expressly covered in Appendix 1. Such assessment of the seriousness of the Player’s conduct shall be determined by reference to the following features of offending:
(a) The offending was intentional, that is, committed intentionally or deliberately;
(b) The offending was reckless, that is the Player knew (or should have known) there was a risk of committing an act of Illegal and/or Foul Play;
(c) The gravity of the Player’s actions in relation to the offence:
(i) Nature of actions, manner in which offence committed including part of body used i.e. fist, elbow, knee or boot;
(ii) The existence of provocation and whether the Player acted in retaliation and/or self-defence;
(d) The effect of the offending Player’s actions on the victim (i.e. extent of injury, removal of Player from game);
(e) The effect of offending Player’s actions on the game;
(f) The vulnerability of victim Player including part of victim’s body involved/affected, position of Player, ability to defend himself;
(g) The level of participation in the offending and level of premeditation;
(h) Whether the conduct of the offending Player was completed or amounted to an attempt;
(i) Any other feature of the Player’s conduct which constitutes the offending.
Based on the assessment of the offence(s) under consideration against the above features of offending, the Discipline Committee shall categorize the offence(s) as being at the lower end, mid range or top end of the scale of seriousness of offending and identify the applicable entry point where set out in Appendix 1. For offences categorized at the top end of the scale of seriousness of offending, the Discipline Committee is entitled to identify an entry point between the period shown as the top end of Appendix 1 and the maximum sanction.
14.5 Having identified the applicable entry point for consideration of a particular incident, the Discipline Committee shall identify all relevant aggravating factors and determine what additional period of suspension, if any, above the applicable entry point for the offence should apply to the case in question. Aggravating factors include the following:
(a) An absence or lack of remorse and/or contrition on the part of the offending Player;
(b) The Player’s status as an offender of the Laws of the Game;
(c) The need for a deterrent to combat a pattern of offending;
(d) Any other off field aggravating factor that the Discipline Committee considers relevant and appropriate.
14.6 Thereafter, the Discipline Committee shall identify all relevant mitigating factors and determine if there are grounds for reducing the period of suspension, if any. Mitigating factors include the following:
(a) The presence and timing of an acknowledgement of culpability/guilt by the offending Player;
(b) A good record and/or good character;
(c) The age and experience of the Player;
(d) The Player’s conduct prior to and at the hearing;
(e) Remorse for the Player’s actions and the victim Player;
(f) Any other off field mitigating factor that the Discipline Committee considers relevant and appropriate.
14.7 In cases involving offending that has been classified pursuant to Article 14.4 as lower end offending, where there are compelling on-field and/or off-field mitigating features and a complete absence of on-field and/or off-field aggravating features, the Discipline Committee may apply sanctions less than the lower end entry sanctions specified in Appendix 1 and in this respect only, the lower end sanctions set out in Appendix 1 are not minimum sanctions.
14.8 In cases of multiple offending, the Discipline Committee may impose sanctions to run either on a concurrent or a consecutive basis provided that the total sanction is in all the circumstances proportionate to the level of the overall offending.
14.9 In addition to any sanction imposed by the Discipline Committee by reference to the IRB Recommended Sanctions, the Discipline Committee may impose a term of probation of between 6 and 36 months during which the Player may be subject to harsher sanctions in relation to any new incidents requiring review by the Discipline Committee.
14.10 The Committee may also, in appropriate circumstances, require, as part of a sanction imposed upon a Player or a Coach, that the Player or Coach attend and satisfactorily complete one or more (referee or coaching) development courses and/or one or more referee or coaching assignments.
14.11 In any case, where a Player has, in addition to his/her current offence, been previously suspended by the BCRU-DC at any time when the Player is under a probation sanction, the BCRU-DC shall take into account the Player’s previous offence and suspension in imposing any penalty on that Player.
14.12 Usually a second offence of a similar nature while a Player is subject to a probation sanction shall result in an automatic doubling of the penalty for the second offence.
14.13 The Discipline Committee shall, upon request of a Player who has appeared at a Discipline Hearing, provide written reasons for its decisions which specify the reasoning for their findings, including the finding on culpability, how it has categorized the seriousness of the offence by reference to the standard described in Article 14.4, how it applied aggravating and mitigating factors and concluding with the sanction, if any, imposed.
14.14 The Discipline Committee may, when considering the sanction, if any is to be imposed on the Player who has been deemed to have been Ordered Off under section 6.5, reset the yellow card count for that Player at 0, 1 or 2 depending on the circumstances which gave rise to the yellow cards previously received by the Player and whether the Player was under a Probation Sanction when any of such yellow cards were received.
15. Traveling and Off-Field Infractions:
15.1 Upon the receipt of a written complaint from a public carrier, hotel, or restaurant or any other similar business, institution or organization with respect to misconduct by BCRU members, the Discipline Committee may require the cited member’s club to post a bond of up to $1,000 subject to a full hearing into the matter.
15.2 The BCRU-DC will determine, based on the evidence presented, the appropriate course of action to follow as a result of an investigation into this matter.
16.1 Clubs are responsible and accountable for the conduct of their Players, officials and all Persons under their jurisdiction (which shall include Club supporters, whether or not such supporters are Club members), Clubs, Players and Persons must conduct themselves in a disciplined and sporting manner and ensure that they do not commit an act or acts or Misconduct.
For the purposes of this Article, Misconduct shall mean any conduct, behaviour or practices on or off the playing enclosure in connection with a game or tournament (excluding Foul Play during a Match) that is unsporting and/or unruly and/or ill-disciplined and/or that brings or has the potential to bring the sport of Rugby Union, or the BCRU into disrepute.
16.2 It is not possible to provide a definitive and exhaustive list of the types of conduct, behaviour, statements or practices that may amount to Misconduct under these Articles. By way of illustration, each of the following types of conduct is an example of Misconduct:
(a) acts of violence or intimidation within the Venue in which the Match is being played including (without limitation) the tunnel, changing rooms and/or warm-up areas;
(b) acting in an abusive, insulting, intimidating or offensive manner towards Referees, Assistant Referees or other officials or any person associated with the Club’s participating in the Match or spectators;
(c) acts or statements that are or conduct that is discriminatory by reason of religion, race, sex, colour or national or ethnic origin;
(d) seeking or accepting any bribe or other benefit to fix a game or to achieve a contrived outcome to a game or to otherwise influence improperly the outcome of any dimension of aspect of any game;
(e) entering into any wager, bet or form of financial speculation, directly or indirectly as to the result of any other dimension or aspect of any game in which the Person is directly or indirectly involved and/or connected with;
(f) providing inaccurate and/or misleading information about previous Discipline record in any proceedings under this Article or other Discipline proceedings and/or misleading information concerning the Player’s future playing intentions;
(g) any other breach of the BCRU Code of Conduct;
(h) comments and/or conduct in connection with current and/or anticipated Discipline proceedings and/or match officiating (or any aspect thereof), which may be prejudicial to and/or impact on current and/or anticipated Discipline proceedings and/or which are prejudicial to the interests of the game and/or any Person.
16.3 Where the Discipline Committee is made aware of an act of Misconduct, the Discipline Committee shall take such investigative steps as it deems appropriate to determine the particulars of the alleged incident including holding a hearing in respect of the incident in which case the provisions of this Policy relating to Citings shall apply, mutatis mutandis.
17. Public Notice of Discipline Hearing Findings:
17.1 The BCRU office will circulate Discipline Committee minutes to BCRU-DC members.
17.2 The results of Sub Union Discipline hearings will be forwarded to the BCRU office for distribution to the BCRU-DC immediately after the completion of the hearing by the SU-DC.
17.3 The BCRU office is to maintain a data base with respect to all discipline cases reported to the BCRU-DC.
17.4 The record of all discipline cases shall remain in the data base for at least a 24 month period.
17.5 The BCRU will post all BCRU-DC and SU-DC Discipline Hearing results on the BCRU Website.
18.1 An appeal of an order of the BCRU-DC shall be heard by a BCRU Appeal Committee.
18.2 An appeal of an order of a SU-DC shall be heard by that Sub Union’s Executive Committee.
18.3 An appeal of an order of a Sub Union Executive Committee shall be heard by a BCRU Appeal Committee.
19. Post-Hearing Procedures:
19.1 The decision of the Discipline Committee shall be advised to applicable parties, as soon as practicable after the conclusion of the hearing and shall be binding on notification to the Player or his representative, if any. Where it considers it appropriate, the Discipline Committee may deliver a short oral decision at the conclusion of the hearing.
19.2 Relevant parties heard by the Discipline Committee shall be entitled to a copy of any written decision of the Discipline Committee which shall, where practicable, be sent to them by the Host club within 48 hours after it is available.
19.3 In any case where a Player is adversely affected by a decision of the Discipline Committee, he shall be advised by the Discipline Committee of the circumstances in which he may appeal to the BCRU Appeal Committee. Such advice shall, ordinarily, be included in the Discipline Committee’s written decision, if any, and advised at the conclusion of the hearing if an oral decision is given.
19.4 The hearing by the Discipline Committee (save for private deliberations) shall, ordinarily, be fully audio recorded. The record of the proceedings, and all papers associated with the proceedings, shall be held by the Discipline Committee which shall make the same available if required. Copies of the record shall be made available at reasonable cost only on appeal of the decision of the Discipline Committee. An Appeal of a decision of the Discipline Committee shall be undertaken in accordance with the BC Appeal Rules.
20. Playing While Under Suspension:
20.1 A Player Ordered Off or deemed to have been Ordered Off by the Committee under 8.12 may not take part or be selected for any further game or match until his case has been dealt with by a Discipline Committee.
20.2 Without in any way limiting the effect of Article 20.1, a Player that is subject to an Ordering Off (or as may be applicable subject to a misconduct complaint) is not entitled to play in any International Match or Match forming part of an International Tournament or International Tour until his case has been finally resolved.
20.3 A suspended Person or Player who elects to appeal may not take part or be selected for any further Match until his case has been dealt with by an Appeal Committee.
20.4 The BCRU will not tolerate members playing while under suspension.
20.5 If a Player is found to be playing while under suspension, the issue will be dealt with at the next regular meeting of the BCRU-DC.
20.6 The BCRU-DC will determine, based on the evidence presented, the best course of action to follow with respect to imposing additional penalties upon the Player and his/her club.
21. Definition of a Game for Purposes of Discipline:
21.1 A game is defined as a league, exhibition, representative game or a tournament at the same divisional level, or above, that in which the offence occurred.
21.2 An individual ejected from a Premier game may not count a 1st, 2nd or 3rd division game as part of his/her suspension but may count an exhibition game, a representative fixture, a tournament or provincial or regional competition as part of the game count for his/her suspension in accordance with Article 21.4.
21.3 A suspended Player may use a defaulted game as a part of the game count for his/her suspension if the Player was not a member of the defaulting team and in accordance with Article 21.4.
21.4 An exhibition game, a representative game, a tournament, provincial or regional competition or a defaulted game may only be counted towards a suspension if the Player or his/her club requests in writing to the Chair of the BCRU-DC to count these competitions as part of the suspension and the Chair provides written confirmation of its approval of the request application.
21.5 Generally, a Seven Aside tournament will be treated as being equivalent to one divisional game.
21.6 The Chair of the BCRU-DC has the sole discretion as to what constitutes a legitimate exhibition game or tournament.
22. Seven Aside Tournaments:
22.1 Subject to the exceptions noted below, the provisions of this Policy shall apply mutatis mutandis to games played, and any incidents arising from, a Summer Seven Aside tournament.
22.2 The sponsors of each Summer Seven Aside tournament shall arrange for one or more discipline officers (a “Tournament Discipline Officer”) to be appointed to deal with any discipline issues arising during the tournament.
22.3 No person shall be entitled to act as a Tournament Discipline Officer unless his or her appointment as such has been approved by the Discipline Committee.
22.4 A duly appointed Tournament Discipline Officer shall deal with discipline issues arising during the pertinent tournament and, when doing so, shall apply the provisions of this Policy.
22.5 A Tournament Discipline Officer will file within 48 hours of the tournament’s completion a Tournament Discipline Report (in accordance with the Form set out on the BCRU website), which sets out the following:
(a) A Discipline Hearing summary for each red card issued during the tournament, such summary to include:
(i) Name of Player receiving red card;
(ii) Nature of the incident giving rise to the issuance of the red card;
(iii) Resolution of the Tournament Discipline Officer regarding the sanction to be imposed; and
(iv) Any additional observations of the Tournament Discipline Officer regarding the incident or hearing that should be considered by the Discipline Committee;
(b) A summary of any issue arising during the tournament, whether within the playing enclosure or external thereto, which the Tournament Discipline Officer believes merits consideration by the Discipline Committee.
22.6 The BCRU-DC shall maintain a record of all red cards issued during the Summer Seven Aside tournament schedule.
22.7 The BCRU-DC shall review each Tournament Discipline Summary and determine what, if any, additional action is required.
22.8 The BCRU-DC shall have the power to compel Players who receive multiple red cards during the Summer Seven Aside tournament season to attend a hearing before the Discipline Committee. The provisions of this Policy shall apply to such hearing.
22.9 A Player who receives a red card while participating in a Summer Seven Aside tournament shall not be eligible to play in any subsequent game until the Player has appeared before the pertinent Tournament Discipline Officer or the BCRU-DC.
22.10 A Tournament Discipline Officer will not, and does have the authority to, impose a sanction on a Player that extends beyond the end of the Tournament Discipline Officer’s tournament.
23. Additional Provisions:
23.1 In all proceedings heard by the Discipline Committee, Referees and/or Assistant Referees may only give evidence of fact, not opinion.
23.2 The standard of proof on all questions to be determined by the Discipline Committee shall be the balance of probabilities.
23.3 Procedures or proceedings under this Article or any decision of a Discipline Committee shall not be quashed or held invalid by reason only of any defect, irregularity, omission or other technicality unless such defect, irregularity, omission or technicality raises a material doubt as to the reliability of the findings or decisions of a Discipline Committee results in a miscarriage of justice.
23.4 Hearings by the Discipline Committee shall be held in private.
23.5 Where Discipline proceedings, however arising, are taken against more than one Player as a result of incidents occurring in a Match, such proceedings may be heard by a Discipline Committee at the same time, provided there is no prejudice to any person against whom the Discipline proceedings are taken.
23.6 No member of the Discipline Committee should comment to the media on a decision of the Committee but the Chair may release a copy of that decision to the media if it is available; or if a full written decision is not available, release to the media a brief resume of that decision.
23.7 In respect of any matter not provided for in this Article the Discipline Committee shall take a decision according to general principles of natural justice and fairness.
23.8 The Discipline Committee, prior to a hearing or at any stage during a hearing, may amend the offence for which the Player or Person has been Ordered Off or cited unless, having regard to the circumstances of the case, such amendment cannot be made without causing injustice.
Approved January 16, 2016
British Columbia Rugby Union (BC Rugby) is committed to protecting your privacy and safeguarding your personal information.
The purpose of this policy is to set out and describe how British Columbia Rugby Union (BC Rugby) may collect, use and disclose your personal information.
Effective date: October 1, 2015
1. Policy Objective
The purpose of this policy is to set a standard, ensuring that communications across British Columbia Rugby Union (BC Rugby) are well coordinated, presented coherently, managed effectively and compliant with all relevant Canadian and Provincial Laws of British Columbia.
2. Policy Statement
It is the policy of BC Rugby to:
A. Provide the membership with timely, accurate, intelligible and complete information about BC Rugby policies, programs, services and initiatives;
B. Employ a variety of methods and channels to effectively communicate BC Rugby information, utilizing a mix of traditional methods and new technologies, reflecting the diversity within the BC Rugby community and continuous change in technology and multi-media;
C. Deliver prompt, courteous and responsive service to all in the spirit of BC Rugby, including responding to every unsubscribe request within 10 days or less at no cost to the recipient;
D. Protect minors from inappropriate communications from BC Rugby and cyber-bullying through BC Rugby communication channels;
E. Respect the privacy of its members and stakeholders in compliance with the Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA) of British Columbia;
F. Comply with the Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) by withholding commercial electronic messages from any individual or business without their explicit or implied consent.
This policy covers any communication, including, but not limited to, electronic mail (email), public and private communications via social media, telemarketing, short messaging service (SMS), written correspondence and verbal communications.
This policy applies to all British Columbia Rugby Union (BC Rugby) Board Members, members of staff, as well as any contractor or volunteer that is communicating on behalf of BC Rugby.
5. Supporting Policies
• Personal Information Protection Policy
• Staff, Coach and Volunteer Code of Conduct
6. Policy Implementation
A. BC Rugby will employ a full-time Communications Manager who shall be responsible for the planning, management and efficient execution of an annual communications plan;
B. BC Rugby will invest in the development and maintenance of a high-functioning and accessible website, and invest in the use of an e-marketing service provider, while maintaining a presence on popular social media platforms;
C. BC Rugby will utilize built-in analytics to measure the effectiveness of BC Rugby’s communications plan and the effectiveness of BC Rugby’s website, social media channels and e-marketing service provider;
D. BC Rugby senior staff and Board of Directors will regularly connect with BC Rugby affiliated associations and clubs’ leadership to facilitate greater understanding and feedback on BC Rugby’s policies, programs, services and initiatives;
E. BC Rugby will employ a full-time Member Services Manager who shall be responsible for overseeing that all enquiries are responded to in a timely and respectful manner; unsubscribe requests shall be automated through the e-marketing service provider;
F. BC Rugby will regularly monitor BC Rugby’s social media platforms for abusive or disrespectful behavior; when communicating with minors, BC Rugby will endeavor to limit communication to written format and restrict access to any minor’s contact details to relevant personnel who have a current criminal check and signed a non-disclosure agreement with BC Rugby;
G. BC Rugby will maintain member and stakeholder contact details through the e-marketing service provider, allowing members and stakeholders to manage their personal data, unsubscribe and update preferences at any time;
H. BC Rugby will centralize all commercial communications via the Communications Manager who shall oversee the management and distribution of all commercial communications through the e-marketing service provider that complies with CASL.
Gender and Diversity Policy
Approved January 16, 2016
The purpose of this policy is to state the commitment of the British Rugby Union to equity and diversity, and to identify strategies that will help to promote equity and diversity within our organization and our sphere of influence.
Risk Management Policy
Approved January 27, 2018
The purpose of this policy is to outline a consistent approach to risk management of the governance, strategic and operational practices of British Columbia Rugby Union (BC Rugby) and to detail the transparent approach to the identification, communication, evaluation and management of risk.