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Managing Club Incidents and Conflicts

Navigate through the complexities of managing critical incidents, handling conflicts, and processing complaints within your AFL club with our comprehensive guide. Ensure a safe and supportive environment for all members by implementing effective management strategies.
Section 1

Critical Incident Response

Critical incidents can have a profound impact on the club and its members. Establishing a robust response mechanism ensures that the club can navigate through the incident, providing support to all affected and ensuring continuity of club operations.


Section 2

Conflict Management

Healthy conflict, where conflicting viewpoints are debated, can be of significant benefit to a club, if it is effectively managed. However unhealthy conflict can divert energy, demoralise the committee and volunteers, affect the club culture and prevent the club from achieving its goals. Clubs may experience intense conflicts about directions and policies while others have difficulty due to conflicting roles or personal differences. Regardless of the cause, it’s important to not let conflict get out of hand.

Preventing Conflict

Creating an environment where decisions and issues are open to challenge and new ideas can be constructively discussed is essential to effective leadership and committee culture. However, it’s important that these discussions stay constructive.

There are measure that can be implemented to reduce the risk of harmful conflict including:

  • Ensuring everyone understands their roles and responsibilities
  • The president/chairperson ensures discussions remain on track and are bought back in when discussion gets too heated
  • A code of conduct is adopted for committee meetings
  • Revert back to club strategic plan and goals

Dealing with Toxic Conflict

While you may have measures in place to prevent conflict, damaging conflict can still arise and become harmful to the club. Unfortunately, there is not a single solution to resolve the conflict and resolution will depend on the challenges, circumstances and the personalities of those involved. However some general tips include:

  • Be reasonable and neutral
  • Confirm what's at the root of the conflict
  • Try to identify a win-win solution
  • Leave a way out for the individuals concerned
  • Follow procedure, where possible
  • Focus on the best interests of the club

Reach out to your local league administrator for guidance or visit the Play By the Rules website for information on dealing with conflict

Section 3

Making a Complaint

Ensuring a transparent and accessible complaint-making process is crucial for maintaining trust within the club. The AFL Integrity Reporting Portal allows members to make a report related to various policies, ensuring that grievances are heard and addressed appropriately.

The AFL Integrity Reporting Portal allows you to make a report to the AFL relating to an allegation of behaviour that may contravene the AFL’s:

Here, you have the option to:

Click here to visit the reporting portal.