Voluntary Code of Conduct

GUIDANCE NOTES BELOW

As a Member Club of the Kent Cricket League you have agreed to abide by this Voluntary Code of Conduct and in so doing you have accepted that there is no right of appeal against any sanction contained within this Voluntary Code of Conduct.

Every player registered to play in the League explicitly acknowledges by virtue of their registration the constitution of the League and in particular the powers of the League in relation to conduct and breaches of the rules, including the procedures specified and undertakes to be bound by them including the powers of suspension without recourse to appeal unless such appeal is so specified.

1. Any player reported by an umpire for bad behaviour shall be suspended by his Club for the next ONE League match played.

2. Any player reported by an umpire for bad behaviour for a second time in any one season shall be suspended by his Club for the next FOUR League matches played.

3. Suspensions will be carried over to the following season if applicable.

4. Any player suspended by his Club or by the League for whatever reason shall not be selected to play in Kent League representative matches in the season or seasons in which the suspension applies.

5. Any player reported by an umpire for bad behaviour on THREE occasions in any one season shall be asked to leave the Club.

6. Any player to whom paragraph 5 above applies shall NOT be invited to join any other Kent League Club at any time in the future.

7. Where the same player has been reported by an umpire on the second occasion in any one season his Club shall be fined the sum of £30.00. Thereafter for a third reporting of that player the Club shall be fined a further sum of £30.00.

8. If any individual Club has three players reported by an umpire within any given season that Club shall be fined the sum of £50.00. For every additional player reported within the season the Club shall be fined a further sum of £20.00 for each additional player reported.

NOTES

1. Whereas the Code of Conduct deals with bad behaviour reported by an umpire, the responsibility for upholding standards of behaviour at all times lies squarely with the Clubs and in particular the captain of each team on the day.

2. It should be stressed that nothing in this Code of Conduct should be taken to restrict or discourage clubs from more stringent action against offenders if the Club consider it to be appropriate. 3. All Clubs must take a firm stand to uphold high standards of behaviour whether or not an incident is reported by an umpire and to ensure that any appropriate action is taken. Each member Club is expected to have in place a disciplinary procedure within its own rules.

KENT CRICKET LEAGUE - VOLUNTARY CODE OF CONDUCT GUIDANCE NOTES

 These guidance notes outline the principles behind the Voluntary Code of Conduct (VCC), and the procedures for implementation thereof. It should be stressed that they are simply that - guidance notes - and failure by any umpires to comply with anything herein shall NOT invalidate the contents and effect of any subsequent Umpires' report.

The full version of the Voluntary Code of Conduct is published above and in the Kent League Handbook. Whereas the Code of Conduct deals with bad behaviour reported by an Umpire, the responsibility for upholding standards of behaviour at all times lies squarely with the Clubs, and in particular with the Captain of each team on the day. Note The Spirit of Cricket which is now incorporated in the Laws.

All Clubs must take a firm stand to uphold high standards of behaviour whether or not an incident is reported by an Umpire, and to ensure that any appropriate action is taken. Each member Club is expected to have in place a disciplinary procedure within its own rules. The Voluntary Code of Conduct is unique to the Kent League and provides the strongest possible backing to umpires, as Clubs undertake to suspend any player reported by an umpire without a hearing, and without recourse to appeal. Its legitimacy stems from a unanimous vote of Clubs at the AGM each year, by which all Clubs agree to abide by it.

However, everyone hopes that it will not simply be a mechanism for dealing with the consequences of unacceptable behaviour, but that it will also provide a useful tool to umpires to assist in defusing potentially explosive situations. Should the temperature start to rise sharply, an umpire may find it helpful and effective to have a quiet word with the captain and inform him that, if a player or players continue to overstep the mark, he would then feel obliged to report them under the VCC.

If a captain has perhaps forgotten his obligation under the Laws and the Spirit of Cricket, the risk of players being suspended under the VCC might nevertheless prove salutary. Nevertheless, umpires should feel in no way constrained from reporting a player should they deem their behaviour to be unacceptable.

In the event that an umpire does feel the need to report a player, the Kent League Umpires Panel Standard Report Form should be used. For non-members of the Panel, the form can be obtained either from your Club Secretary, each of whom will have a supply, or from Errol Valentine, the League Administrator.

This form should also be used to report any instance of alleged misconduct by any player, club official or any other person off the field of play. It should ideally be sent to the Kent League Disciplinary Officer, Lawrence Wray, whose address is on the form, within 48 hours of the event taking place. Before they leave the ground on the day of the incident, the Umpires should endeavour, where reasonably practicable, to inform the batting Captain, the fielding Captain and the person(s) involved in the incident that a report is being sent to the Kent League Disciplinary Officer. In any event the umpires should provide salient details to an official of the offending Club by 9.00 p.m. on the Sunday of the weekend that the reportable incident takes place. (Where necessary using the Kent Cricket League Handbook for reference purposes).

It is important that this information is conveyed wherever possible, as the notification to the Club of a report is the factor that "triggers" the suspension under the VCC, rather than receipt of the report by the Disciplinary Officer. This is because it is the Clubs that impose the suspension under the VCC, rather than the League. Given that selection committees invariably meet on a Monday or Tuesday evening, and that every Club would prefer not to have players reported and suspended, notifying the relevant parties on the day is highly desirable to avoid additional selection difficulties and maintain optimum goodwill between Clubs and umpires.

The Management Committee stress that, whilst everyone would prefer player behaviour to be of an impeccable standard, we rely upon our League umpires - within and outside the Panel - to ensure that acceptable standards are upheld. The VCC provides uniquely strong backing for their judgement.