Tag Archives: USEF

Letter from US Equestrian President and CEO Regarding Safe Sport

US Equestrian believes the safety and welfare of our members, especially our children, is of paramount importance and that all members must be kept safe from abuse of all kinds. Abuse has no place in our sport or in our lives. We are the guardians of our sport and it is our collective responsibility to raise awareness and educate each other on the behaviors associated with abuse, both sexual and non-sexual. This year, top equestrian athlete Anne Kursinski shared her powerful personal story of abuse by a person she trusted. To help ensure this abuse doesn’t happen to others, Anne has partnered with US Equestrian to raise awareness of the reporting, support and training resources available through US Equestrian and the U.S. Center for SafeSport. Please click here to view an important video message from Anne.

US Equestrian embarked on building a robust Safe Sport Program starting in 2013, years before Safe Sport became a household term in equestrian sport. During the process of expanding our program, the leadership and Board have been called upon many times to take the lead in creating awareness, reporting methods, education, survivor support, training and other resources. You will be proud to know that, recently, the Board once again took the reins and approved a requirement that, starting January 1, 2019, all adult members (18 years of age and older) who have a USEF Competing Membership must complete the Safe Sport training. This is a major milestone in our efforts to unite our equestrian community in preventing abuse. The core training consists of three modules which take approximately 90 minutes to complete.

Safe Sport education for all members and parents of our junior members is essential to protecting each other, understanding when and how to report, and recognizing the signs in order to prevent abuse before it occurs. US Equestrian provides numerous resources to further your education and participation in the Safe Sport movement. Here are some of the resources available to you at www.usef.org/safesport:

  • Safe Sport training – FREE to all US Equestrian members. Three modules take just under 90 minutes to complete initially, with a 30-minute refresher training annually;
  • A suspended and banned list that identifies the person by name and the reason for their suspension or ban;
  • The U.S. Center for SafeSport has partnered with RAINN to provide a 24-hour victim services hotline, reached at 1.866.200.0796;
  • The new USEF Safe Sport Directory is a searchable database to help individuals, parents, athletes, and others in our sport find the people within our industry who have completed the Safe Sport training and/or a criminal background check;
  • Safe Sport FAQs and Safe Sport training FAQs on our Safe Sport webpage;
  • Town Halls and Affiliate meetings to raise awareness, educate and field questions;
  • Expanding our recently launched #YouAreNotAlone campaign, including providing campaign materials to competition organizers to utilize at competitions;
  • Developing Learning Center educational video content and PSAs for use by USEF, Affiliates and competitions;
  • Expanding the monitoring of USEF and Affiliate Safe Sport compliance; and
  • Hiring additional support staff as needed for the Safe Sport Program.

Additionally, many of our members spend their weekends at competitions, and to make certain that we are providing you with the resources you need when you are attending shows, we have just launched the #YouAreNotAlone campaign. US Equestrian will be providing competition organizers with a Safe Sport Toolkit that includes posters with reporting resources, public address announcements, video PSAs and competitor information. Working with our competition organizers, US Equestrian will bring reporting, education and support resources directly to you at the competition. We want you to know that you are not alone, and we are here to help.

Clear communication on all things related to Safe Sport is important to achieving our mission to raise awareness, assist you with reporting, increase education and provide support. Recently, we sent a hard copy letter accompanied by our USEF Safe Sport Handbook to the parents of our junior members. We strongly believe parents are an integral part of our efforts to prevent abuse. While the U. S. Center for SafeSport’s parental awareness training is available at no cost, we encourage you to join US Equestrian by using the code Parents18 to become a free Fan Member. By providing us with your unique email address, you allow us to more efficiently communicate with you, and through your Fan Membership, you can gain access to all the Safe Sport resources, as well as numerous member benefits and discounts.

In addition to the resources offered by US Equestrian and the Center, it is extremely important that you are aware of this legislation: Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act of 2017. It requires amateur sports organizations and their members to report sex-abuse allegations involving minors to local or federal law enforcement, or to a child-welfare agency designated by the Justice Department, within 24 hours. Failure to do so is a crime.

Not only is reporting the right thing to do, it is critical to creating a safe environment for athletes and members. Sexual and non-sexual misconduct have two distinct reporting processes:

  1. All sexual misconduct should be reported directly to the U.S. Center for SafeSport by phone 720-524-5640 or online at safesport.org.
  2. All non-sexual misconduct or violations of the Safe Sport Policy should be reported directly to US Equestrian. Reports through US Equestrian can be submitted using the USEF Incident Report Form, or by email or phone to Teresa Roper, Safe Sport Program Coordinator, troper@usef.org, 859-225-6915, Sonja Keating, General Counsel, skeating@usef.org, 859-225-2045, or Emily Pratt, epratt@usef.org, 859-225-6956.

Both the U.S. Center for SafeSport and US Equestrian will accept anonymous reports, but please note that it can be very difficult to investigate anonymous complaints.

The safety of our members and the future of our sport are dependent on how all of us act. Together, we will make a difference and we will make our sport a place where safety is the norm and abuse finds no home. We hope you will embrace this call to action and join us in our efforts to eradicate abuse in our sport.

Please contact our legal department, which handles all Safe Sport inquiries, at skeating@usef.org, should you have any questions or need assistance.

Sincerely,

Murray S. Kessler
President

William J. Moroney
Chief Executive Officer

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

Safe Sport Training Frequently Asked Questions

Lexington, KY – The US Equestrian Federation (USEF) announced a rule change on Tuesday, August 28, 2018, requiring that, effective January 1, 2019, all USEF members 18 and over with an Adult Competing Membership must complete Safe Sport training in order to be eligible to participate in USEF activities, including competitions. Since that announcement, we are pleased to report that over 3,500 USEF members completed the Safe Sport training. To provide further guidance, below are a list of Frequently Asked Questions regarding the new rule change.

Where can I locate the required Safe Sport training? How long does it take?
The required Safe Sport Core Training is on the U.S. Center for SafeSport website. Instructions on how to set up an account and access the training are here. It will take approximately 90 minutes to complete and consists of three modules: Sexual Misconduct Awareness Education, Mandatory Reporting, and Emotional and Physical Misconduct. All three modules must be completed in order to satisfy the requirement.

Who is required to take the Safe Sport training?
Any USEF member who is 18 years old and above and who has a USEF Adult Competing Membership is required to take the Safe Sport training, including amateurs, professionals, and owners who have an annual, three-year, or lifetime membership. The Safe Sport training requirement does not include USEF Fan Members.

How long do I have to complete the requirement?
All USEF Adult Competing Members must complete the training within 30 days of joining or renewing their membership. USEF will provide members who renew or join on or after December 1, 2018 a 30-day grace period to complete the Safe Sport training. Members joining prior to December 1, 2018 will have until January 1, 2019 to complete the training.

What happens if I do not comply with the training requirement?
Those who do not complete the Safe Sport training will be ineligible to participate in USEF activities, including competitions.

How often do I need to complete the Safe Sport training?
The required Safe Sport Core Training (approximately 90 minutes) only needs to be completed once. A Safe Sport Refresher training course, which takes approximately 30 minutes, must be completed annually thereafter. US Equestrian is providing Adult Competing Members a 30-day grace period to complete the training.

What happens if I join or renew at a horse show?
If someone joins or renews at a horse show, he or she has 30 days to take the training.

If I have already taken the Safe Sport training, do I have to take it again?
If you have taken Safe Sport Core Training, approximately 90 minutes, after January 1, 2018, you will not need to take the Safe Sport Core Training again. If you have taken an older version of the Safe Sport Core Training prior to January 1, 2018, you will need to complete the new version to be eligible to participate in USEF activities, including competitions.

How long does it take for USEF to receive notification that someone has completed the Safe Sport training?
It can take up to 48 hours for USEF to receive notification and the system to reflect that someone has taken the training. At the end of completing all three training modules, you can print a certificate that says “SafeSport Trained” for verification purposes.

How will show secretaries and competition managers know if someone has taken the Safe Sport training?
Competition management and secretaries will have access to a combined Suspension and Ineligibility List in the same manner as the current Suspension List to identify those who are ineligible to compete. USEF Safe Sport Training records from the U.S. Center for SafeSport automatically update the USEF system every 24 to 48 hours. If a person appears on the Safe Sport Training Ineligibility list but has completed the training before the system updates, he or she can print and take a copy of the SafeSport Trained certificate to the show office to prove he or she is eligible to compete. Anyone who has passed the 30-day grace period without taking the training will show up as ineligible to compete.

Why is there not a Safe Sport training for US Equestrian junior members?
There is a Safe Sport Training module for youth in the works. This training will be available approximately in October 2018. Currently, there is a free Safe Sport training module for parents in addition to a Safe Sport Parent Toolkit, which has information for parents of preschool, middle school, and school-age children.

Why do I have to take the Safe Sport training when I have little or no interaction with those under the age of 18 years?
US Equestrian’s Safe Sport Policy and the rules that govern it have been created to protect all athletes from misconduct. Recognizing the signs and behaviors associated with abuse will help all of us to prevent it. In addition, the training covers information on reporting and under federal law, we all have a mandate to report any reasonable suspicion of sexual misconduct with a minor.

Do parents have to complete the Safe Sport training?
A parent signing an entry blank is not required to be a USEF member. We encourage all parents take the free Safe Sport Parent’s Training and to become USEF Members to stay informed.

Can entire barns take the training together?
Currently that option is not available.

If the owner of my horse has not taken the Safe Sport training, is the horse ineligible to compete?
Horses entered under owners who are on the Safe Sport Ineligibility List are ineligible to compete at USEF-sanctioned competitions.

Do Farm Members have to take Safe Sport training?
Farm entities are not required to take Safe Sport training.

How do I get in contact with Safe Sport for technical support?
Please call 720-676-6417 for technical support or email help.desk@safesport.org. For assistance setting up a Safe Sport account, please call 720-531-0344.

Additional information and resources on Safe Sport, how to report sexual and non-sexual misconduct, access to a free training module for parents of equestrian athletes, a Safe Sport FAQ, the Safe Sport Sanctions list, and more can be found here.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

US Equestrian Safe Sport Ban and Temporary Suspension Communication Policy Update

Lexington, Ky. – US Equestrian recently updated our notification process for Safe Sport temporary suspensions and lifetime bans.  US Equestrian continually evaluates our communication strategy to ensure we provide our members with meaningful information in a timely manner.

Currently, we post the temporary suspensions and banned individuals list online which is available to the public. We suggest members and the media check this list on a regular basis to stay informed.

We also notify competition management regarding temporary suspensions and bans to ensure show management has the information they need to make certain these individuals do not participate in competitions and are not on the grounds.  Notifications go out directly to all competition managers and secretaries from our IT database to ensure 100% reach.  Additionally, we inform key USEF staff, the affiliate, and the FEI based on the individual’s specific breed or discipline.  US Equestrian has been directly reaching out to individuals who have received bans or temporary suspensions with phone calls to supplement the e-mail notification they receive from The U.S. Center for SafeSport.

For members, US Equestrian will feature a special Safe Sport section in the Equestrian Weekly member newsletter with a link to the current banned and temporary suspension list, as well as important Safe Sport news and updates.  US Equestrian will consider broader communication to press and members when deemed appropriate to ensure enforcement and awareness to effectively implement a ban including removing their name from past accolades and preventing future recognition.

Lastly, we have posted Safe Sport Frequently Asked Questions on our website and will continue to update this reference material on an ongoing basis.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

US Equestrian Names Dressage Team for World Equestrian Games Tryon 2018

Lexington, Ky. – US Equestrian has named four athlete-and-horse combinations to The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team for the FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) Tryon 2018, which will take place September 11-23, in Mill Spring, N.C.

After competing in designated Observation Events throughout the summer, the following athlete-and-horse combinations have been selected to represent U.S. dressage at the WEG under the leadership of Chef d’Equipe Robert Dover (in alphabetical order):

Laura Graves (Geneva, Fla.) and Verdades, a 16-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding she owns with Curt Maes

Adrienne Lyle (Ketchum, Idaho) and Salvino, Betsy Juliano LLC’s 11-year-old Hanoverian stallion

Kasey Perry-Glass (Wellington, Fla.) and Goerklintgaards Dublet, Diane Perry’s 15-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding

Steffen Peters (San Diego, Calif.) and Rosamunde, Four Winds Farm’s 11-year-old Rheinlander mare

The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team will compete beginning September 12 and 13, with the Grand Prix Team competition and Individual Qualifier. On September 14, teams will contest the Grand Prix Special, and the Grand Prix Freestyle on September 16.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

US Equestrian Announces Para-Dressage Team for World Equestrian Games 2018

Lexington, KY – US Equestrian has named four athlete-and-horse combinations to the U.S. Para-Equestrian Dressage Team presented by Deloitte for the FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) Tryon 2018, which will take place September 11-23, 2018. Following the 2017-2018 selection period, the US Equestrian Board of Directors approved the following combinations for the FEI Nominated Entry List.

Rebecca Hart (Wellington, Fla.), Grade III, with El Corona Texel, Rowan O’Reilly’s nine-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding

Angela Peavy (Wellington, Fla.), Grade IV, with Royal Dark Chocolate, Rebecca Reno’s 10-year-old Oldenburg mare

Kate Shoemaker (Peoria, Ariz.), Grade IV, with Solitaer 40, the 11-year-old Hanoverian stallion she owns with Craig and Deena Shoemaker

Roxanne Trunnell (Rowlett, Texas), Grade I, and Kate Shoemaker’s Dolton, a six-year-old Hanoverian gelding

For more information about FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, visit Tryon2018.com.

For more information about the USPEA, please visit www.USPEA.org or contact USPEA President: Hope Hand by e-mail: hope@uspea.org or by phone: (610)356-6481.

Safe Sport Frequently Asked Questions

US Equestrian has prepared responses to frequently asked questions regarding interim measures issued by the U.S. Center for SafeSport. The following information is an additional resource to help further educate US Equestrian members and the public around these important matters.

Safe Sport

What is the U.S. Center for SafeSport, what is their jurisdiction and how is the Center empowered?
The U.S. Center for SafeSport launched in March 2017 as an independent entity charged with (i) providing education and outreach about athlete abuse; and (ii) investigating and resolving reports of sexual misconduct. Their jurisdiction is exclusive as it relates to allegations of sexual misconduct and it retains discretionary jurisdiction over non-sexual misconduct allegations, i.e. bullying, harassment, physical and emotional misconduct.

The Center was authorized by Congress on February 14, 2018, through S. 534 – Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act of 2017.

The bill amended the Ted Stevens Olympic and Amateur Sports Act of 1978 by designating the U.S. Center for SafeSport to serve as the independent national safe sport organization, with the responsibility for developing policies and procedures to prevent the emotional, physical, and sexual abuse of amateur athletes.

What are the reporting requirements?
All USEF members and participants must report to the U.S. Center for SafeSport conduct of which they become aware that could constitute (a) sexual misconduct, (b) misconduct that is reasonably related to the underlying allegation of sexual misconduct, and (c) retaliation related to an allegation of sexual misconduct. This report must be made within 24 hours of learning about the alleged misconduct.

Importantly, the obligation to report requires reporting any conduct that comes to a member’s or participant’s attention, which if true, would violate the U.S. Center for SafeSport Code or USEF Safe Sport Policy.

Individuals should not investigate or attempt to evaluate the credibility or validity of allegations involving sexual misconduct, as a condition of reporting to the U.S. Center for SafeSport.

What happens if I do not report conduct that I am required to report?
The failure to report is a crime under federal law and it is punishable as a criminal offense. In addition, the failure to report is a violation that could result in a sanction against the individual.

Am I required to report about suspected abuse that occurred several years ago?
Yes. There is no statute of limitations applicable to reports of incidents of sexual misconduct made to the U.S. Center for SafeSport.

What resources are available to learn more about Safe Sport?
The USEF website links to the Center with extensive resources, including:

  • Reporting forms and process
  • 24 Hour Helpline
  • Definitions
  • Safe Sport Training
  • Safe Sport Code
  • USEF Safe Sport Policy
  • Safe Sport Sanctions List

Suspensions, Bans, and Enforcement

Who decides whether to issue a temporary suspension for sexual misconduct?
The U.S. Center for SafeSport has exclusive jurisdiction over reports of sexual misconduct and determines whether interim measures, including suspensions should be imposed.

Does the U.S. Center for SafeSport issue a temporary suspension in connection with every report of allegations of sexual misconduct?
No.  The U.S. Center for SafeSport issues a temporary suspension when they deem the facts and circumstances warrant it.

What is the criteria for a temporary suspension?
The U.S. Center for SafeSport may impose interim measures, i.e. a temporary suspension, when they deem it is appropriate to ensure the safety and well-being of the Reporting Party, Athletes, other Non-Athletes or the Responding Party.  Interim measures may be appropriate where an allegation against the Responding Party is sufficiently serious that the Responding Party’s continued participation could be detrimental to the sport or its reputation.

For more information refer to the U.S. Center for Safe Sport Practices and Procedures, please visit: https://www.safesport.org/files/index/tag/policies-procedures.

Is there a process for a person to seek relief from a temporary suspension?
Yes. An individual may request that the U.S. Center for SafeSport stay the temporary suspension in certain circumstances, e.g. participation in a certain event. In addition to, or in lieu of, a request for a stay, the individual may request an interim measures hearing, which will be afforded within 72 hours of such request. The interim measures hearing is conducted before an independent arbitration body.

Can a suspended person request that USEF lift their suspension or permit them to participate in some activities?
No, any request for relief from a suspension must be directed to the U.S. Center for SafeSport, and decisions will be made in accordance with their Practices and Procedures.

How are individuals notified they are under a temporary suspension?
The U.S. Center for SafeSport notifies the Responding Party by e-mail.

What is the scope of an interim measures hearing on a temporary suspension?
An interim measures hearing is limited to determining whether reasonable cause exists to justify the temporary suspension. It is not a full hearing on the merits of the case.

Is there recourse against someone who intentionally makes a false accusation?
Someone who abuses the process, falsifies information or maliciously abuses the process is subject to sanctions.

Does the USEF know the reporting party?
No, the U.S. Center for SafeSport will not identify or use the name of a Third-Party Reporter nor will it publicly release a Reporting Party’s identifying information.

Why can’t everyone know everything about an investigation?
Sharing details about allegations made, or an investigation, can impede the ability to thoroughly investigate a matter without interference. In some cases, law enforcement may be involved and the fact that an investigation is underway could compromise the ability of law enforcement to secure the evidence necessary to pursue an indictment.

Once a determination is made that a violation occurred, what guidelines does the U.S. Center for SafeSport follow to determine appropriate sanctions?
According to the U.S. Center for SafeSport Practices and Procedures, the following guidelines are used:

Sanctioning Guidelines

Sanctions will be reasonable and proportionate to the Code violation and surrounding circumstances with the intended effect of protecting relevant participants. One or more of the following sanctions may be recommended or imposed singularly or in combination: (a) written warning; b) educational or behavioral programs; (c) loss of privileges; (d) probation; (e) suspension or other eligibility restrictions, up to and including permanent ineligibility. The Officer reserves the right to lessen or broaden any range of recommended sanctions in the case of mitigating circumstances or egregiously offensive behavior.

Factors relevant to determining appropriate sanctions include, without limitation:

  • Seriousness of the Violation;
  • The Responding Party’s prior history;
  • Ages of individuals involved;
  • Whether the Responding Party poses an ongoing threat to the safety of others;
  • Voluntary disclosure of offense and/or cooperation by the Responding Party;
  • Disposition of an investigation by state or federal law authorities;
  • Real or perceived impact of incident on the Reporting Party, NGB(s) or USOC; and
  • Other mitigating and aggravating circumstances.

For more information refer to the U.S. Center for Safe Sport Practices and Procedures, please visit: https://www.safesport.org/files/index/tag/policies-procedures.

What is USEF’s responsibility to enforce sanctions?
Federal Law requires USEF to enforce sanctions imposed by the U.S. Center for SafeSport and interim measures, including temporary suspensions. Communicating the information to members and the media is an important way to ensure protection of our members and participants in equestrian sport.

When did USEF’s Safe Sport program start?
USEF established a Safe Sport Policy, effective December 1, 2013, prior to the Center being created.  The Policy covered the areas of prohibited conduct (sexual misconduct, emotional misconduct, physical misconduct, bullying, harassment, and hazing), training and education, criminal background checks, reporting and enforcement.  Program requirements included Safe Sport Training and criminal background checks for USEF Staff, Licensed Officials, Board Members and Team Chefs and Coaches.

What is the responsibility of USEF Recognized Affiliates and their associated organizations and activities?
A suspended or banned person is prohibited from participating, in any capacity, in any activity or competition authorized by, organized by, or under the auspices of the United States Olympic Committee, the national governing bodies recognized by the United States Olympic Committee, including US Equestrian, and/or any US Equestrian Affiliated Organization.  This prohibition affects a person regardless of whether or not they are a USEF member. Competition licensees and management are responsible for ensuring that no banned or suspended person is on the competition grounds.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

Safe Sport Updates from USEF President and CEO

Safe sport has been a topic of national conversation recently and we take this issue very seriously. USEF has been proactive for several years under the leadership of our General Counsel Sonja Keating to develop and implement safe sport programs and we want to share additional steps we are taking to ensure our children and young athletes are safe while practicing and competing in the sport they love.

Expanding Mandatory Requirements for Safe Sport Training

Currently, Safe Sport training is required for designated individuals including persons that the USEF formally authorizes, approves or appoints to a position of authority over athletes or have frequent contact with athletes. At the June meeting, the US Equestrian Board of Directors will consider expanding this rule to require mandatory Safe Sport training for all participants at USEF licensed competitions. Safe Sport training is done online with the initial course taking approximately 90 minutes and the refresher course required annually taking approximately 30 minutes. This would be a personal responsibility rule and compliance would be done by US Equestrian and not by competitions.

Newly Created Safe Sport USEF Staff Position

US Equestrian has recently hired a staff member dedicated to all elements of our Safe Sport program including education, communication and compliance.

New Training Resources for Parents and Participants

It is essential that all members educate themselves regarding Safe Sport. Not only to understand when and how to report, but also to recognize the signs in order to prevent abuse before it occurs. To further your education and participation in this movement, US Equestrian provides numerous Safe Sport Initiative resources on our website at www.usef.org including the following:

  • Safe Sport Training – FREE to members! Three modules that take just under ninety minutes to complete initially, with refresher training (currently voluntary);
  • New resources developed by the Center and designed specifically for parents of equestrian athletes of all ages are available on our website. The training video is free. Parent toolkits are available too for parents of preschool age children, middle school age children, school age children, and high school aged adolescents.
  • A banned list that identifies the person by name and reason for their ban; and
  • The U.S. Center for Safe Sport has partnered with RAINN to provide a 24-hour victim services hotline, reached at 1.866.200.0796.

Know the New Federal Legislation Reporting Requirements –they impact you

In addition to the resources offered by the U.S. Center for SafeSport and US Equestrian, it is extremely important you are aware of legislation that passed on February 14, 2018, Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act of 2017.  It requires amateur sports organizations and its members to report sex-abuse allegations to the U.S. Center for Safe Sport and to local or federal law enforcement, within 24 hours of such knowledge. Failure to do so is a crime.

Bully, Harassment and Unsportsmanlike Behavior

Not all misconduct is sexual. Bullying, harassment and unsportsmanlike behavior are also violations of our Safe Sport policy and unacceptable. All reports will be properly investigated and appropriate measures taken should those investigations result in a finding of a violation.

Under the Safe Sport policy, bullying and harassment are defined as follows:

  • Bullying – Repeated and/or severe (a) aggressive behavior (b) among Minors, (c) that is intended or likely to hurt, control, or diminish another person emotionally, physically, or sexually. Such misconduct between adults does not constitute bullying; the conduct must be directed toward someone under 18 years of age to be actionable as bullying under the Center’s Code or our Safe Sport Policy.
  • Harassment – Repeated and/or severe conduct that (a) causes fear, humiliation or annoyance; (b) offends or degrades; (c) creates a hostile environment; or (d) reflects discriminatory bias in an attempt to establish dominance, superiority or power over an individual athlete or group based on age, gender, sexual orientation, gender expression, gender identity, race, ethnicity, culture, religion, national origin, or mental or physical disability; or (e) any act or conduct described as harassment under federal or state law. Whether conduct is harassing depends on the totality of the circumstances, including the nature, frequency, intensity, location, context, and duration of the behavior.

Reporting

Sexual and non-sexual misconduct have two distinct reporting processes:

  • All sexual misconduct should be reported directly to the U.S. Center for SafeSport by phone at 720-524-5640 or online at safesport.org.
  • All non-sexual misconduct or violations of the Safe Sport Policy should be reported directly to US Equestrian. Reports through US Equestrian can be submitted using the USEF Incident Report Form, or by email or phone to Sonja Keating, General Counsel, skeating@usef.org, 859-225-2045, Sarah Gilbert, sgilbert@usef.org, 859-225-2022, or Emily Pratt, epratt@usef.org, 859-225-6956.

Both the U.S. Center for SafeSport and US Equestrian will accept anonymous reports, but please note that it can be very difficult to investigate anonymous complaints.

US Equestrian is dedicated to bringing the joy of horse sports to as many people as possible and part of that joy is making sure you have the resources available to assist you in making safe choices for our children.  In the same way that our members look to US Equestrian, US Equestrian looks to the Center for the answers to our questions so that we do all we can to make your experience safe and fulfill our responsibilities as an NGB.

Please contact Sonja Keating in our legal department for all Safe Sport inquiries. She can be reached at skeating@usef.org.

Murray S. Kessler
President

William J. Moroney
Chief Executive Officer

US Equestrian Federation
4047 Iron Works Parkway
Lexington, KY 40511
P. 859 258 2472 , F. 859 231 6662

Larson and Huss Tie for Gold, McCutcheon Bronze at WEG Reining Test Event

Larson and Arc Gunnabeabigstar (Photo by Waltenberry)

Mill Spring, N.C. – In an important step towards being named to the U.S. Reining Squad for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ (WEG) Tryon 2018, U.S. reining athletes contested the WEG Reining Test Event and USEF Selection Trial this week at the Tryon International Equestrian Center on Thursday, May 10 and Saturday, May 12.

With scores compiled from both evening’s rounds, it was Jordan Larson and Dan Huss leading the way for a gold-medal tie and ending on a combined score of 450.0. Larson (Valley View, Texas) and Arc Gunnabeabigstar, a seven-year-old Quarter Horse stallion owned by HDC Quarter Horses USA, LLC, sat fourth after Thursday’s round with a score of 222.0. Huss (Scottsdale, Ariz.) and Ms Dreamy, an eight-year-old Quarter Horse mare owned by Christen R. Frederick, won Thursday’s round on a score of 224.0.

Larson was part of the gold-medal U.S. Reining Team for WEG in Normandy, France in 2014 and is excited about the possibility of representing the U.S. again. “It was cool to go to France, but I think it is even more pressure to represent well here. We have our work cut out to get ready. That horse is a good one. [Arc Gunnabeabigstar] has been really good to me and it seems like he just keeps getting better. When it counts, he’s his best. When I ask him for everything, he’s his best.”

“For me, I was just waiting for a nice horse,” laughed Huss. “She is a Magnum daughter out of a Gunner mare. It would mean a lot to me [to represent the U.S. at WEG]. I’m not a guy with a big ego, but I came here to win this and I want to win the WEG. I have some room to improve. I have to beat my fellow teammates, because they are tough.”

A third-generation reiner and on the cusp of his 18th birthday, Cade McCutcheon claimed the bronze medal at the USEF Selection Trial. McCutcheon (Aubrey, Texas) and Custom Made Gun, a seven-year-old Quarter Horse stallion owned by Tim and Colleen McQuay, were tied for second after Thursday’s round. The combination held their own in the second round to end on a score of 446.0. Should McCutcheon’s place on the U.S. Reining Team for WEG be finalized, he would become the youngest U.S. athlete to represent reining at the Games.

“It means a lot to come here with the likes of Jordan [Larson] or Casey [Deary], my dad, and Shawn [Flarida],” said McCutcheon. “I’ve always been in the non-pro, which isn’t easy, but it’s a lot easier than this. It is a big honor to get to show here and a bigger honor to be where I am at. It means a lot to be able to do this sport with my family; it makes it way more fun. My parents don’t put any pressure on me. It wouldn’t make a difference to them if I marked a 208 or a 220, as long as I am having fun.”

Full results for the WEG Reining Test Event and USEF Selection Trial can be found here.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

Every Day at the Barn Is Mother’s Day

Faye with the Welsh Pony M.E. Don’t Come Back Jack and Eloise with the Andalusian Robusto AF. Photo credit: Gina Falcone/Courtesy of Carlyn Nuyda-Calloway.

In families where parents and children both ride, that experience can be especially fulfilling. That’s what California-based fashion designer and Meditation Studio owner Carlyn Nuyda-Calloway and her daughters, Eloise and Faye, have found. The three are the latest in a line of female equestrians in their family who have shared the connection with horses down the generations, from the East Coast of America to the Philippines and now in Southern California.

“For me, it creates such a strong bond with them. I get to share their joy, and they get to share mine,” Carlyn said of equestrian life with her daughters. “It’s also about teamwork. Sometimes we disagree, but, because there’s a horse involved, we have to agree to disagree. We have to come to a point where we’re all in this together. We are able to finish each other’s sentences beyond the barn partly because we spend so much time together in the barn. It’s made us so much closer as a family. Although my husband is allergic to horses, he does come to the shows and he does his part, too. But the whole thing has definitely created a synergy between me and my girls.

“And it’s just so much fun!”

“Whenever I’m at the barn, and especially when I’m riding, it reminds me that equestrianism is the only sport where your equipment can decide not to cooperate,” said Eloise, 14. “And you can’t really get mad at them when they go against what you want, because it doesn’t really help. I think it teaches us all to sit back and go with the flow. It teaches us to look at the bright side of things and be satisfied with what we have and work through it, patiently.

“It’s definitely strengthened our relationship,” she added. “Being there forces us to ask each other for help. You know, I wouldn’t always want to ask my little sister for help outside the barn, because that’s the way siblings are with each other. But being at the barn, we’re all equal and friends.”

Faye, 11, explained it succinctly. “At the barn, everything is happier!” she said. “We get along much better and can relate to things much better — not saying that we don’t do that at home, but it just feels so free at the barn.”

Carlyn’s mother, Rocio Nuyda, now retired, also frequently accompanies her daughter and granddaughter to the Los Angeles Equestrian Center, where Eloise and Faye ride. In fact, the love of horses has been passed down through several generations of women on Carlyn’s father’s side of the family.

“I’ve always been a horse girl for as long as I can remember,” said Carlyn, who grew up in the Philippines. “My grandmother was an amazing horsewoman, and she was the one who influenced me to really love and embrace that whole world.”

Carlyn came by her love of horses honestly. Her grandmother, Evelyn Rollins Nuyda, brought equestrianism with her when she moved from Washington, D.C. to the Philippines after marriage. “She was an English hunter jumper rider, and she also did steeplechases,” Carlyn said, adding that her grandmother competed for the Philippines in competitions both as an equestrian and as a swimmer. “We never had the opportunity to ride together. I was a young girl when I watched her ride at the Manila Polo Club.”

One day her grandmother told Carlyn, then about five or six, “Someday you’re going to want to ride your own horse.” She handed the girl a belt, as if it were a pair of reins. Holding the ends of the reins — where a bit would go on a real set of reins — Carlyn’s grandmother tugged slightly against Carlyn’s hands. “’That’s what you call contact,’ she said. Then she pulled the belt, and the leather slipped out of my hands. She said, ‘When that happens, you no longer have contact. Now I’ll show you how to hold the reins.’ She put the belt between my three fingers and my pinkie, and then she tugged again, and this time the ‘reins’ didn’t slip. She taught me about contact and also about feel, about give and take. I remember that.”

Throughout much of her childhood, Carlyn’s riding centered around ponies rented for the Christmas holidays. “I would practice that contact my grandmother taught me,” Carlyn said, recalling that her grandmother’s instruction was to use the hands only when necessary, and after applying the seat and leg first.

“In my mind, on those ponies at Christmastime I was a grand prix rider!” Carlyn recalled. “I could be riding the shaggiest pony on an old Western saddle, but I didn’t care — I thought I was a grand prix rider.”

As a young adult, now a resident of Los Angeles, Carlyn began riding lessons as a hunter jumper at the Traditional Equitation School at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center — always mindful of her grandmother’s words on the importance of soft, quiet hands. She later tried some combined training with trainer Linda Bierma, adding beginning dressage to her riding experience, and leased a Hanoverian mare named Schwann. But when she got pregnant with her first child, Eloise, she took a break from the saddle.

Happily, the girls — first Eloise and then Faye — showed signs of loving horses from an early age. “I waited until they were both old enough to start riding with me, and then we started riding together on rented horses. It was my way of getting back to horses and staying all together.”

Eventually, the family fell in love with a Tennessee walking horse named Dixie, who became a horse of a lifetime for Carlyn and her daughters — and found her “forever family,” as Carlyn puts it — after trainer Dana Kanstul allowed Carlyn to adopt the mare.

“The moment I got on Dixie, I felt this rush that overwhelmed me,” Carlyn explained. “It was unlike anything I’ve ever felt in my life, a surge of warm energy. I could feel her talking to me. I fell in love with her. And I knew this was the horse that was going to teach my children to love the whole experience of horses.

“I don’t think they would have become the horsewomen they are without her,” she continued. “She taught them humility and about being gentle and being kind. That was the gift she gave us: to have that reverence for the horse and to understand the privilege of being on their backs. That is not to be taken for granted.”

Eloise and Faye blossomed as young equestrians in their own right, earning blue ribbons or high-point awards in disciplines as varied as saddle seat, Western and English pleasure and equitation, and dressage. Dixie died last October after a long and happy life, but the happy experiences she gave Carlyn and her children have carried on.

Eloise’s focus is now on dressage, in which she has recently been showing at Training Level with her 10-year-old Andalusian, Robusto AF. The family bought “Robbie” from Nancy Latta of Amandalusian Farm.

“The breed is known not only for its long history and beauty, but also for its versatility,” Carlyn said. “They can do dressage, saddle seat, hunt seat, Western — you name it. Our thought was that, since this is her first horse and dressage is very new to her, we’d consider buying a horse who could change his job title in case dressage didn’t turn out to be her cup of tea. He’s absolutely stunning and very kind, and the Andalusian temperament really suits our personalities as a family.”

And dressage suits Eloise well, the young rider says. “I guess you could say this about pretty much every equestrian sport, but it’s the connection between the horse and the rider,” Eloise said. “But, for some reason, in dressage it seems so different. One day I watched a video of Charlotte Dujardin riding Valegro, and I don’t know why, but I just started crying. That’s when we knew I had to do dressage. Everything feels like it’s in slow motion, and there’s almost a kind of telepathy, where we’re reading each other’s minds in slow motion.”

Faye, meanwhile, also began training in dressage on a 25-year-old Welsh Pony named Jack — short for M.E. Don’t Come Back Jack — that the Calloways previously leased from Bryce Quinto at Lehua Custer Dressage.

“It felt like Jack and I were connected, like we were one person,” said Faye. “When I rode him, everything felt like I was in a different, perfect world. It was an amazing feeling. I recently had to end my lease with Jack because our training program has changed, but I will always have a special place in my heart for Jack. He taught me so much, and I’m very grateful.”

Today, the family rides with Tim Keeling at Quiet Canyon at the LAEC.

“I know I’m a mom who is proud of her children,” said Carlyn, “but even back when they were riding rented horses around Griffith Park, Eloise and Faye were constantly connected to the horses. Even if they were talking to each other, they were constantly aware of their horses and communicating with them.”

Carlyn recently acquired an 18-year-old Andalusian, too. “After Dixie’s passing, Amadalusian Farm trainer Sandy Shields offered to have me take over her beautiful horse Centello H,” Carlyn explained. “He has had many years on the show circuit. Having a disability like multiple sclerosis, it’s very important to be able to feel confident and safe around horses. Centello is kind, well-behaved, and a true gentleman to me. He and the kids and I are beginning to bond with one another similarly to the way Dixie did when we first laid eyes on her. He came from heaven, really, thanks to Sandy Shields.

“I ride for pleasure,” she added. “I go out on a hack, and I just love being around the horses.”

That bond between horse and human — and among family, too — is something Carlyn believes will continue to carry on through her daughters, thanks to the experiences they’re all sharing now.

“I like being their cheerleader, and I like being there on days when they feel helpless or despair or when they feel challenged,” she said. “We are sharing our joy together. If they didn’t want to ride, that would have been fine, and I wouldn’t want to be the mom who made them ride if they didn’t want to — it’s not fair to the horse if you’re not committed to them. But I’m glad they did.”

The kids seem glad, too, and they’re appreciate the character-building and the happiness people derive from working with horses.

“When I’m at the barn there are times when I’m doing things and thinking, ‘Oh, why am I having to do this? It’s so irritating!’ or ‘This bucket is so heavy!’” said Eloise. “But then I think to myself, ‘When you get older and have the money to pay for your own things, sure, you can think that. But, right now, you’re not the one who’s doing this for you. Everyone else around you is making this possible: your mom and dad, you sister, your grandmother, your aunts and uncles.’ The reason I’m getting to any of this is because of my family. They’re sacrificing things in their life to make this possible for me.”

Whether you’re a mom or not, Carlyn and family recommend a little barn time. It’s not just for holidays, after all.

“If you’ve got the chance to be with a horse, you’ve got to make it count, because it’s not often you get to interact with one of God’s most majestic creatures at that level,” said Carlyn. “It’s like your soul is entwined with theirs, and that’s so special.”

by Glenye Cain Oakford
© 2018 United States Equestrian Federation

US Equestrian Names Short List for FEI World Equestrian Games U.S. Dressage Team

Lexington, Ky. – US Equestrian has named the Short List for the FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) Tryon 2018 The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team. The Short List will compete in designated Observation Events throughout the summer.

The following horse-and-athlete combinations have been named to the Short List (in alphabetical order):

Shelly Francis (Loxahatchee, Fla.) with Patricia Stempel’s 14-year-old Hanoverian gelding Danilo

Laura Graves (Geneva, Fla.) with her and Curt Maes’s 16-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding Verdades

Ashley Holzer (New York, N.Y.) with Diane Fellows’s 11-year-old Hanoverian mare Havanna 145

Olivia LaGoy-Weltz (Haymarket, Va.) with her and Mary Anne McPhail’s 14-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding Lonoir

Adrienne Lyle (Ketchum, Idaho) with Betsy Juliano’s 11-year-old Hanoverian stallion Salvino

Kasey Perry-Glass (Wellington, Fla.) with Diane Perry’s 15-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding Goerklintgaards Dublet

Steffen Peters (San Diego, Calif.) with Four Winds Farm’s 11-year-old Rheinlander mare Rosamunde and Four Winds Farm’s 10-year-old KWPN gelding Suppenkasper

Sabine Schut-Kery (Thousand Oaks, Calif.) with Alice Womble’s 12-year-old Hanoverian stallion Sanceo

Combinations will be required to compete in a minimum of two Observation Events. The Observation Event schedule, as well as the complete Selection Procedures, for the 2018 WEG The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team can be found here.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department