Rules/Officiating Resources

SafeSport & Background Checks

US Sailing takes seriously our responsibility to help raise awareness about misconduct in sport, promote open dialogue, and provide resources to our members, member organizations, athletes, coaches, parents, and volunteers. Our partnership with the U.S. Center for SafeSport reinforces our commitment to an environment free from misconduct and abuse. US Sailing has a policy of zero tolerance for abuse and misconduct.

SafeSport Training

SafeSport training is a free online course that provides education on:
  • Sexual Misconduct Awareness
  • Emotional and Physical Misconduct
  • Mandatory Reporting (Understanding Your Responsibilities)

Following initial Core training, members take annual refresher training that will include new topics.


Take Safesport Training


SafeSport training is required for all US Sailing race officials

From the US Sailing Covered Participant List, approved May 13, 2019:

"Certified Race Officials shall complete SafeSport training as a prerequisite for certification and shall complete SafeSport training annually thereafter."

Once you complete the online course, your SafeSport training will appear on your SOARS Annual Report. We hope you will also help promote awareness of athlete safety  in your role as a race official.

US Sailing-certified race officials are mandatory reporters as defined by the SafeSport Code.

SafeSport training is required to maintain your certification

Beginning in 2019, race officials are required to take the 30-minute Refresher training no later than the one-year anniversary date of their previous training to remain in compliance. If you do not complete the annual refresher, your race official certifications will be invalid until you do so.

If you have difficulty with the SafeSport dashboard, please contact:

SafeSport Technical Support Help Desk
(720) 676-6417

Background Checks for Race Officials

The US Sailing Board of Directors in November 2019 approved a background check policy for race officials whose purpose is to further ensure a safe environment for all participants in our sport and protect persons at risk, including minors and vulnerable adults.

Under United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) policy, US Sailing must conduct periodic background checks on any individual authorized, approved, or appointed to (a) serve in a position of authority over athletes or (b) have regular contact with athletes.

The full policy, an FAQ document and several other documents from US Sailing's background check provider, Hire Image, can be accessed by the red buttons below. Here are some key points:

  • Background checks include searches of multiple criminal databases, multiple sex offender registries and national watch lists, and federal and county criminal records covering jurisdictions where an individual has resided during the past seven years (subject to applicable state laws on reporting).
  • US Sailing will decline certification to individuals with any disposition other than “not guilty” to a felony offense involving violence against a person, a felony or misdemeanor offense involving harm to a minor, a felony or misdemeanor sexual offense, or registration on a sex offender list.
  • Other serious criminal offenses may result in denial of certification.
  • Hire Image complies with stringent industry standards for data security. Personally identifiable information is redacted in reports provided to US Sailing, and report information is made available to two only staff members of US Sailing.
  • Completed background checks will appear in SOARS as “Background Check” and are effective for 24 months.
  • US Sailing covers the fee for background checks for certified race officials and candidates.
  • At this time, US Sailing is unable to accept the results of background checks from other providers.


You will receive an email from Please follow the directions to consent to the background check. Checks usually take 3-7 days, but may take longer if you have lived at multiple addresses or outside the US in the past seven years.

When your background check is complete, the notation "Background Check" with issue and expiration dates will appear in SOARS.

Race Official Background Checks FAQ

Hire Image/USS Background Check FAQ

Race Official Background Checks Policy

Hire Image Data Security

Hire Image Background Check Search Components

(Please note that items 9-13 under "Individual/Position Specific Searches" in the Search Components document do not apply to race officials.)

First time candidates for a race official certification must complete the background check process before certification is granted.

When an official's background check is due for renewal at the end of the 24-month period, he or she will receive an email from Hire Image with directions for initiating a new check.