Discipline within Hockey comes under the England Hockey Code of Ethics and Behaviour and falls into three categories:-
1.Matchday Misconduct Offences
In basic terms Red Cards are issued by the umpires during a match whilst Matchday Misconduct relates to incidents before and after matches that would have resulted in a Red Card being issued if the incident had occurred during the match. Similar to Red Cards it is the umpires who report Matchday Misconduct Offences. Disrepute Offences arise when a Club or individual wish to report an incident that they consider has brought the Sport into disrepute. A Club can report incidents but if an individual wishes to report an incident it has to be supported by an affiliated body ie a Club.
In all of these situations there are official England Hockey Forms that will need to be completed and emailed to the County Discipline Administrator of the County for which the player was playing. In the case of Kent players that would be Alan Sargent, whose details are shown on page 1 of this handbook. The appropriate Forms can be downloaded directly from the England Hockey website under the Code of Ethics and Behaviour section along with a copy of the full Code at www.englandhockey.co.uk
As soon as possible after the match has finished or the incident occurred Alan Sargent should be contacted and he will be able to provide guidance on what to do.
It is strongly recommended that both umpires, in the event of a Red Card or Matchday Misconduct Offence, and the person wishing to put in a complaint under the Disrepute Offence category write down details of what happened as soon as possible. That should include when the incident happened, what happened at the time, were any players or officials injured as a result of the incident in which case details of the severity of the injuries, if anything happened before or after the incident, the weather conditions, whether any other cards had been issued to the player or other players before the incident plus the score at the time of the incident and the final score. In addition the name of the player involved should be obtained and if it is thought that anyone involved is under the age of 18 their names and ages.
The umpires must not discuss the incident with any of the players at the end of the match but, in the case of a Red Card, they should advise the captain of the team whose player received the card under which of three categories the offence was being reported. These categories are:-
a) where physical violence is not used, attempted or threatened
b) where physical violence is used/attempted or threatened to a player or any other person
c) where physical violence is used/attempted or threatened on an umpire or properly appointed tournament or match official.
The Code provides details of minimum penalties under each of these categories but these must be treated as a starting point and significantly higher penalties are likely to be imposed in cases of actual violence.
If a Red Card is shown the player involved is immediately suspended for an initial period of 16 days for which there is no right of appeal, except in the case of mistaken identity. There is, however, an England Hockey Appeals Procedure in place, which applies once the Club has been advised of the full penalty imposed. There is an official Appeals Notice Form, which can also be downloaded via the England Hockey website.
In conclusion it is strongly recommended that if any Clubs, player, umpires or officials have any questions relating to the Code they should contact Alan Sargent.