Safeguarding for Referees


We here to support you.

If you are a Referee seeking support with a CRC please contact our Referee Development Officer, Nigel Freelove directly.

If you are aged 16 or above and are officiating in youth football, you must have an in-date, FA Accepted, DBS Check. The step-by-step guide for Referees to complete this can be found below.

Safeguarding Contacts

T: 01606 871166 (opt 5)


T: 07717 810409


CRC Checks

Only referees who are over the age of 16 (on the date of registration) and who intend to officiate in youth football (i.e. under 18) need to have an in-date FA accepted CRC. In the event that you do not possess an FA accepted CRC, or your current CRC is more than three years old and you indicate during the registration process that it is your intention to officiate in youth football, you will be unable to complete the registration process and will need to contact your RDO who will provide assistance and advice. 


A child or young person may inform you directly that he or she is concerned about someone’s behaviour towards them or you may become aware, through your own observations or through a third party, of possible abuse occurring.

There are five ways to report a concern:

  • To your Club Welfare Officer – please find out from your club who these people are;
  • To your County FA Designated Safeguarding Officer;
  • By emailing The FA Safeguarding Team at or by calling and asking for the team on 0800 169 1863;
  • If urgent and you cannot contact your club, league or County FA Designated Safeguarding Officer, you should call the NSPCC 24-hour helpline on 0808 800 5000;
  • If it is an emergency because a child or children are at immediate risk, then call the Police (999) or Children’s Social Care in your area.

Any adult or young person with concerns about a colleague’s conduct towards a child or young person can also use whistle-blowing by calling 0800 169 1863 and asking for The FA’s safeguarding team, or via email to

Best Practice & Guidance

Safeguarding Directory

Top Tips, templates & a great resource.