Discipline Policy


 
In this policy, “member” refers to all individuals who have attained official status as a National umpire, evaluator, or supervisor.  Official status is defined as any umpire who is recognized as a National umpire (i.e. – Level 4T classification or higher) or any individual who has been approved by Baseball Canada as an instructor, evaluator, or supervisor.
 
Preamble
 
The Baseball Canada Umpires’ Committee is committed to the development of amateur officiating in Canada and the establishment of cordial and respectful relationships among the entire baseball community.
 
Membership as a Baseball Canada Umpire may provide many benefits and privileges.  At the same time, members are expected to fulfill certain responsibilities and obligations, including but not limited to, complying with the Code of Conduct, policies, rules, and regulations of Baseball Canada.
 
The Baseball Canada Code of Conduct (Attachment A) identifies the standard of behaviour which is expected of Baseball Canada Umpires.  Members who fail to meet this standard will be subject to the disciplinary sanctions identified within this policy.
 
Application
 
This policy applies to all members who have achieved official and recognized status as a Baseball Canada Umpire and may include working umpires, appointed evaluators, supervisors, or instructors.
 
This policy applies to disciplinary matters that may occur during the course of any Baseball Canada business which may pertain to umpires.  This may include, but is not limited to, national championships and international events.
 
Disciplinary matters arising within the business, activities, or events of provincial/territorial baseball associations shall be dealt with using the disciplinary policies and mechanisms of such organizations.
 
Minor Infractions
 
Examples of Minor Infractions
 
a single incident of disrespectful, offensive, or abusive comments or behavior directed towards others, including but not limited to peers, athletes, coaches, tournament officials, administrators, spectators and sponsors;
a single incident of unprofessional conduct such as angry outbursts, arguing, or a minor act of insubordination towards a supervisor or tournament official;
a single incident of being late for or absent from a Baseball Canada event or activity at which attendance is expected or required;
non-compliance with rules or regulations under which Baseball Canada events are conducted, whether at the local, provincial, national, or international level.
 
 
Minor Infractions Process
 
All disciplinary situations involving minor infractions occurring within the jurisdiction of Baseball Canada will be dealt with by the appropriate person having authority over the situation and individual involved (this person may include, but is not restricted to, a tournament supervisor or assistant supervisor, or tournament chairperson). 
 
Any alleged minor infraction regarding the conduct of a national tournament supervisor or assistant supervisor or recognized evaluator must be registered with Baseball Canada by September 30th of the championship year.  Complaints may be lodged with the Baseball Canada representative at any time during the championship, or with the complainant’s provincial supervisor upon completion of the championship.  In either case, the Baseball Canada Umpires’ Committee must be informed by September 30th of the championship year to allow adequate time for the alleged offender to respond to the allegations prior to any sanctions being considered or administered.
 
Procedures for dealing with minor infractions shall be informal as compared to those for major infractions and shall be determined at the discretion of the person responsible for the discipline of such infractions, provided that the individual being disciplined is told the nature of the infraction and has an opportunity to provide any pertinent information concerning the incident. 
 
It is imperative that all minor infractions be documented and discussed with the alleged offender in order to provide said individual(s) with the opportunity to address the issue.  In cases where an umpire has committed a minor infraction, a supervisor or assistant supervisor should make every effort to discuss the incident with the umpire as soon as possible rather than waiting until the post-tournament evaluation.  Documentation of the infraction and discussion will be forwarded to the Baseball Canada office by September 30th of the championship year and this documentation will be placed in the umpire’s dossier.
 
 
Umpires will have access to the contents of their dossier at any time.  Contents of the dossier may be used to assess qualifications for assignments and to assist in instructing the umpire in behavioral change.
 
Sanctions for Minor Infractions
 
The following disciplinary sanctions may be applied, singly or in combination, for minor infractions:
 
verbal reprimand;
written reprimand to be placed in individual’s dossier;
verbal apology given by the offender;
written apology signed by the offender;
suspension from a portion of or entire current competition; and
other sanctions as may be considered appropriate for the offense.
 
Minor infractions which result in disciplinary action shall be recorded using the Incident Report form in Attachment C.  Use of this form is mandatory if any disciplinary action is taken as it will be particularly important for recording repeat infractions.
 
 
Major Infractions
 
Examples of Major Infractions
 
Examples of major infractions include, but are not limited to:
 
repeated incidents of disrespectful, offensive, or abusive comments or behavior OR any incident of sexist or racist comments or behavior directed towards others, including but not limited to peers, athletes, coaches, tournament officials, administrators, spectators, or sponsors;
repeated incidents of unprofessional conduct such as angry outbursts, arguing, or insubordination towards a supervisor or tournament official OR a single incident of such aforementioned activity that is deemed to be severe;
knowingly providing false information on a medical clearance report;
repeated incidents of being late for or absent from Baseball Canada events and activities at which attendance is expected or required;
pranks, jokes, or other activities which may endanger the safety of others;
wagering, betting, or engaging in any game of chance related to the outcome of, or any facet thereof, any baseball game in which that umpire may have influence on; 
failing to comply with the Baseball Canada Umpire Dress Code by using clothing or equipment which violates any exclusivity agreements between Baseball Canada Umpires and suppliers;
abusive use of alcohol where abuse means a level of consumption which impairs the individual’s ability to speak, walk or drive; causes the individual to behave in a disruptive manner; or interferes with the individual’s ability to perform effectively or safely;
use of illicit drugs or narcotics or any other banned substance.
 
Major Infractions Process
 
When a major infraction is deemed to have occurred a hearing must be held.  Participants at the hearing shall include, but are not limited to:
 
the alleged offender;
the Supervisor and/or the Assistant Supervisor of the championship;
the appointed Baseball Canada representative of the championship;
any witnesses necessary to confirm or rebut the allegations/incident in question; and
any other individual(s) deemed appropriate by Baseball Canada.
 
The purpose of the hearing is to gather as much information as possible regarding the incident and to allow the alleged offender to provide any pertinent defense or explanation for the alleged infraction.  It is imperative that detailed documentation of the hearing is kept and such documentation must be forwarded to the Baseball Canada Supervisor of Umpires by September 30th of the championship year.    
 
Major infractions may be reported to the Baseball Canada Supervisor of Umpires (or his designate) upon completion of a hearing.  Failure to report the infraction to the National Supervisor does not absolve the alleged offender of any wrongdoing.  Some major infractions (i.e. racist or sexist in nature) should be dealt with immediately while others may be dealt with upon completion of the tournament.  The discretion of the tournament supervisor and/or the assistant supervisor and/or the Baseball Canada representative (in situations where a complaint may involve a supervisor or assistant supervisor) shall determine if the Baseball Canada Supervisor of Umpires should be contacted prior to the completion of the event.
 
Upon notification of an incident (via receipt of an Incident Report form, telephone call, email, fax, etc.) the National Supervisor of Umpires (or his designate) shall provide feedback on the incident and, in consultation with tournament supervisors and/or Baseball Canada representatives, make recommendations as to any immediate sanctions.  Any sanctions administered at this time shall pertain only to the current event or championship.
 
In the event that a hearing cannot be held (i.e. the incident occurred at the end of the tournament and the alleged offender is departing or has departed) every effort must be made to create documentation of the alleged infraction and the surrounding circumstances.  Witness statements should be collected by the tournament supervisors and/or the Baseball Canada representative and these must be forwarded to the National Supervisor of Umpires (or his designate) AND the Baseball Canada office within seven days of the completion of the championship.  Upon receipt of this documentation, Baseball Canada must contact the alleged offender to obtain further information about the allegations.  These findings must be reported to the 
 
National Supervisor of Umpires (or his designate) by September 30th of the championship year.
 
Major infractions occurring within the competition may be dealt with immediately, if necessary, by a Baseball Canada representative in a position of authority at said competition (i.e. the appointed Baseball Canada Umpire Supervisor of the championship) provided that a hearing has been held, the individual being disciplined has been told of the nature of the infraction, and the individual has had an opportunity to provide information concerning the incident.  In such situations, disciplinary sanctions shall be for 
 
the duration of the event only.  It is imperative that the alleged offender be made aware that further sanctions may be applied after the incident has been reviewed by the National Umpires’ Committee. 
 
The hearing may be waived in cases where the alleged offender acknowledges and does not dispute the facts of the incident.  In this situation, the offender will be required to sign written documentation acknowledging the accuracy of the facts and indicating that he/she has waived the right to an oral or written submission at the hearing.  The action of the umpire signing the waiver does not constitute an admission of guilt but rather an admission of the facts as documented. 
 
If the alleged offender chooses not to participate in the hearing, or sign documentation acknowledging the facts, the hearing shall proceed.  Documentation of the hearing events must still be forwarded to the Baseball Canada office within seven days of the completion of the championship.  Baseball Canada will contact the alleged offender for further information and forward any findings to the National Supervisor of Umpires by September 30th of the championship year.
 
Sanctions – Major Infractions
 
The Baseball Canada Umpires’ Committee, after review, may recommend to Baseball Canada the following sanctions singly, or in combination, for major infractions:
 
written reprimand to be placed in individual’s dossier;
written apology signed by the offender;
suspension from certain Baseball Canada events, which may include suspension from the current competition or from future competitions;
suspension from certain or all Baseball Canada activities (i.e. competing, coaching, or officiating) for a designated period of time;
expulsion from Baseball Canada; and
other sanctions as may be considered appropriate for the offense.
 
The preceding sanctions may be modified, or added to, as required by the provisions of any other pertinent Baseball Canada policy, such as those dealing with harassment, doping, or event-specific matters.
 
Unless indicated by Baseball Canada, the disciplinary sanctions shall commence immediately.
 
In applying sanctions, the following aggravating and mitigating circumstances may be regarded:
 
the nature and severity of the offense;
whether the incident is a first offense or has occurred repeatedly;
the individual’s acknowledgement of responsibility;
the individual’s extent of remorse;
the age, maturity, or experience of the individual; and 
the individual’s prospects for rehabilitation.
 
In addition to the above policies and procedures, all Baseball Canada Umpires are subject to the guidelines, policies and procedures set out by Baseball Canada.
 
Appeals
 
Except where otherwise provided, an appeal of any disciplinary matter will be done according to the Appeals Policy of Baseball Canada.