Rules for managing incidents
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- Everyone who takes part in fencing combat must follow these rules.
- Marshals enforce the rules and have the authority to take action if there is a safety issue or if a fencer breaks the rules. Fencers also have the right to question a decision or to appeal any action that is taken against you.
- This section sets out the actions and processes for managing incidents.
- Fencers can be suspended from combat for breaking the rules during a bout.
- If the person supervising the field believes a fencer is breaking the rules, they will give the fencer a warning.
- Following that warning, the Fencing Marshal-in-Charge can suspend a fencer for any of the following reasons:
- They have broken the rules for a third time.
- They are refusing to obey the lawful commands of the person supervising the field.
- The person supervising the field believes the fencer's behaviour poses a risk to you or to others.
- Once a fencer has been suspended, they cannot take part in fencing combat until the incident has been resolved. This requires a ruling by the Group Fencing Marshal, with the approval of the Kingdom Fencing Marshal.
- If a fencer believes their opponent has hit them too hard (either accidentally or deliberately), this should be discussed upon the field.
- If the fencer who raised the concern is not satisfied with the outcome of that discussion, they can make a written complaint to the Group Fencing Marshal.
- The Group Fencing Marshal will review the complaint and make a ruling in consultation with the Kingdom Fencing Marshal.
- The Group Fencing Marshal must tell the other fencer that a complaint has been made and is being investigated.
- The Group Fencing Marshal must write to both fencers advising them of the result of the investigation.
- If a fencer is injured and is unable to continue, or needs treatment from a health professional, the person supervising the field must stop the combat and report the incident immediately to the Fencing Marshal-in-Charge.
- If the injury might have been because of the actions of the fencer's opponent (for example because of an excessive blow), the Fencing Marshal-in-Charge must suspend that fencer from combat while the incident is investigated.
- The length of the suspension will vary depending on the circumstances, but will be the decision of the Fencing Marshal-in-Charge.
- The Fencing Marshal-in-Charge must report any such injury to the Group Fencing Marshal as soon as possible. The Group Fencing Marshal must report the incident to the Kingdom Fencing Marshal within 24 hours, and the Kingdom Seneschal immediately if an ambulance attends the event.
- The Kingdom Fencing Marshal must ensure an investigation is conducted and provide a report to the Kingdom Earl Marshal within 10 days of the incident being reported.
- Marshals must investigate and report any serious weapons failure during a practice or combat, such as a broken blade, or blunts that a sword tip has punched through.
- These incidents must be reported to the Kingdom Fencing Marshal within 14 days and to the Society Fencing Marshal within 90 days.
- The Kingdom Fencing Marshal can suspend a fencer or marshal from taking part in fencing activities, if they receive 3 letters of complaint about the person.
- The Kingdom Fencing Marshal must investigate these complaints in consultation with the responsible Group Fencing Marshal.
- The Kingdom Fencing Marshal must inform the person in writing of the suspension and the investigation.
- The Kingdom Fencing Marshal must complete the investigation and make any rulings within 6 weeks of the suspension being imposed.
- If a person is suspended from fencing activities, the Kingdom Fencing Marshal can decide, after an investigation to take further action, after getting approval from the Kingdom Earl Marshal.
- This action can include:
- requiring the person to to re-train to address the issue that led to the suspension
- revoking the person's authorisation.
- The Kingdom Fencing Marshal will offer the fencer or marshal the chance to re-train to address the issue identified in the investigation.
- If the person agrees, the Kingdom Fencing Marshal will ask the Group Fencing Marshal to appoint an Authorising Fencing Marshal to supervise the re-training.
- Once the trainer is satisfied that the issue has been addressed, they will provide a written report to the Group Fencing Marshal.
- The Group Fencing Marshal will test you, with the assistance of an impartial Authorising Fencing Marshal, to confirm that the issue has been resolved.
- The test might be:
- a verbal test to confirm that the person understands the rule in question
- a combat test, where the fencer fights under the supervision of the impartial marshal to confirm that the issue has been resolved.
- If the Group Fencing Marshal and their adviser consider the issue has been resolved, they will send a written report to the Kingdom Fencing Marshal.
- Once the Kingdom Fencing Marshal is satisfied, they will notify the fencer or marshal in writing that the suspension has been lifted, subject to a 12-month probationary period.
- If a person is suspended for a second time within your probationary period, the Kingdom Fencing Marshal will revoke their authorisation for 12 months. A marshal who has their authorisation revoked will not be allowed to participate as a marshal or as a fencer.
- After 12 months, the person will have the opportunity to authorise as a new combatant or marshal.
- If a person's authorisation is revoked twice, the Kingdom Fencing Marshal will recommend to the Kingdom Earl Marshal and to the Crown that their authorisation is permanently revoked.
- Fencers have the right to appeal a decision to suspend them from combat at an event. They must make your appeal within 72 hours of being informed of the decision.
- You should make your first appeal to the Fencing Marshal-in-Charge of the event. If you are not satisfied with the result, you can refer your appeal (in writing) through the Group Fencing Marshal to the:
- Kingdom Fencing Marshal, and then to the
- Kingdom Earl Marshal.
- You have the right to appeal any decision by the Kingdom Fencing Marshal or the Kingdom Earl Marshal to suspend your authorisation, require re-training, or revoke your authorisation. You must lodge your appeal within 72 hours of being informed of the decision.
- Appeals against decisions by the Kingdom Earl Marshal shall be heard by the Crown.
- All appeals are covered by the grievance procedure in Kingdom Law.