The Council of Europe's code of conduct and ethics in Sport

The Council of Europe has put together guidance and examples of Code of Conduct in sports.


"Guiding principle

One of the most popular instruments to protect children’s safety in sport is the code of conduct for all people involved in sport.

Indeed, many of the available normative frameworks mention this instrument as a suitable tool in the prevention of sexual violence in sport. Promoting ethical guidelines, a code of conduct, ethical leadership or an acceptable standard of behavior is recommended in all documents.

What? A clearly written description of acceptable and non-acceptable behavior of sport leaders, athletes, officials, board members, parents and other stakeholders in sport organisations, and related disciplinary sanctions


Tips from PSS+ partners and experts for codes of conduct and codes of ethics


  1. Develop a set of codes of conduct / ethics tailored to the different roles in your organisation (coaches, athletes, officials, parents, club safeguarding officers, etc.) and ensure they (the relevant stakeholders) have a role to play in the development of this.
  2. Cover all relevant behavior on and offline, and relationships in positions of trust.
  3. Involve children and young people in the development of any code and refer to child protection aspects and children’s rights.
  4. Codes of conduct and codes of ethics must be agreed and signed for. Signing the code of conduct / ethics should be a condition of recruitment and a condition for parents before their child can enroll.
  5. Clearly indicate the consequences for breaches of codes and the sanctions that apply.
  6. Include minimum procedures that are meaningful, applicable and simple. Make a link with complaints, disciplinary and grievance procedures.
  7. Create a code that is ‘alive’. At the beginning of each season (every year), update the code and everyone must sign and endorse it."