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Policies

The Lifesaving Society policies provide direction to the Society’s Members, Instructors, Trainers and Affiliates. They are designed to:

  • Protect the integrity of the Society’s training standards
  • Protect the privacy of individuals
  • Guide member behaviour

At the discretion of the Lifesaving Society policies are subject to change without notice. Please refer to the information below for a current and complete list of policies.

The Lifesaving Society’s reputation in aquatic safety and its status as a charitable organization impose high expectations of professional and ethical behaviour. The Society’s reputation depends on the integrity of its volunteers, instructors, staff and other representatives. Members of the Society carry a high burden of trust.

The way in which that trust is discharged determines to a great extent the Society’s success and the place of pride it enjoys in the aquatic community and in society at large. Individuals and organizations that interact with the Society can expect a high level of integrity and respect from the Society. This code of conduct outlines the ethical standards of conduct expected of individuals, employees, volunteers interacting with the Society, and details the Society’s policy with respect to workplace discrimination, bullying and harassment and workplace violence.

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Under the Lifesaving Society’s certification review policy, a certification review committee conducts confidential investigations of serious complaints and recommends appropriate action that may include probation, suspension, revocation of appointment or decertification. The policy applies to holders of Lifesaving Society leadership appointments including instructors, coaches and trainers who deliver the Society’s program to others. The policy may apply to other award holders including lifeguards who fail to maintain or reflect the Society’s standards. All concerns should be brought forward to the Society in writing and addressed to the Lifesaving Society British Columbia & Yukon Branch Executive Director.

The Lifesaving Society respects the individual’s right to privacy and is committed to keeping personal information accurate, confidential, secure, and private. Except as specifically outlined in this policy, the Society does not disclose any individual’s personal information to any third parties.

What We Collect and Why: The Lifesaving Society collects information required to provide services to members and other individuals. This includes an individual’s name, address, phone number, email address, birth date, gender, and payment information.

The Lifesaving Society’s training programs are designed to maximize the participation and success of individuals of various ages, skill levels and abilities. The Lifesaving Society encourages its Affiliate Members to use their discretion in the placement and advancement of individuals with special needs. For example, if more practice would correct a problem identified by the instructor, then it is in the best interest of the participant to remain at the same level.

The Society recognizes that some individuals may be unable to achieve all the performance criteria (Must Sees) for some items. In the Society’s Swim for Life, Swim to Survive Programs, Swim Patrol, Bronze Star, Junior Lifeguard Club, Lifesaving Fitness, and Lifesaving Sport Fundamentals programs, if an individual can complete the item(s) with modifications or otherwise achieve the purpose statement(s), then the programmer/instructor should advance the participant to the next level as long as this does not compromise the safety of the individual or others.

While the Society welcomes the participation in vocational certifications and other Lifesaving Society rescue awards, certification is based solely on an individual’s ability to meet the performance criteria (Must Sees) without modification. Those lifesaving awards include Bronze Star, Bronze Medallion and Bronze Cross. Vocational certifications include: National Lifeguard, all Instructor awards, Coaching awards, Trainer appointments and in all First Aid awards.

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Prerequisites are awards or certifications that must be earned prior to the start date of the course to which they apply.

Proof of prerequisites must be available to the Instructor on the first day of the course. If prerequisites are not shown, we recommend that the candidate not be allowed to continue in the program as the Branch office will not allow exemptions/exceptions under any circumstances. If a certification is taken concurrently, it will be deemed to have been earned in the correct order.

Age prerequisites must be attained by the last day of the course and can be confirmed by a birth certificate, passport, medical card, or any other legal document/identification.

Acceptable proof of prerequisites can be:

  • Find a Member print-out with a verification code.
  • Lifesaving Society temporary card (within 60 days)
  • Lifesaving Society issued certification card
  • First Aid certification card issued from a Branch recognized agency (Lifesaving Society, St. John Ambulance, Canadian Red Cross, Canadian Heart & Stroke, Canadian Ski Patrol)

Candidates, Instructors and Trainers holding certifications from other provinces will be required to transfer their certifications to the BC & Yukon Branch before a permanent certification card can be issued.

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Lifesaving Awards Transfer Policy:

Certification holders moving to BC or the Yukon from another Canadian Lifesaving Society Branch need to arrange to have their awards transferred from their home Branch. To make this process easy, please use the online Inter-Branch Transfer Form. ( https://www.lifesaving.bc.ca/award-transfer-request)

Please note that First Aid Instructors, First Aid Instructor Trainers, Lifesaving Instructors, Lifesaving Instructor Trainers, National Lifeguard Instructors, and National Lifeguard Instructor Trainers will need to complete additional items prior to teaching in BC. Please check with the BC & Yukon Branch prior to teaching any advanced certification levels in BC or the Yukon.

Leadership Transfer Policy Lifesaving Society:

Instructors must transfer their awards to the BC & Yukon Branch prior to teaching. All Lifesaving Society Instructors & Instructor

Trainers who are not current will be required to attend an in-person stream-specific Instructor Recert as the BC & Yukon Branch does not use the credit system.

Current Lifesaving Society Instructors: from another Canadian Lifesaving Society Branch are required to transfer their awards to the BC & Yukon Branch prior to teaching.

Current Lifesaving Instructor Trainers: may teach an LSI full course once they have:

  • Submitted a completed Lifesaving Instructor Trainer Training Record; which will include a successful co-teach on a full Lifesaving Instructor course with an experienced Lifesaving Instructor Trainer.

Current National Lifeguard Instructors: may teach an NL full course and conduct an NL Recert once they have:

  • Completed an NL Instructor Transfer Package which focuses on program policies and provincial legislative requirements.
  • Submitted a completed NL Instructor Training Record; which will include a successful co-teach on a full NL Precert/Recert with an NLI Mentor.

Current National Lifeguard Instructor Trainers: may teach an NLI course once they have:

  • Completed a NL Instructor Transfer Package which focuses on program policies and provincial legislative requirements.
  • Submitted a completed NL Instructor Trainer Training Record; which will include a successful co-teach on a full NLI course with a training mentor.

Current Lifesaving First Aid Instructors: may teach first aid courses once they have:

  • Completed a First Aid Instructor Transfer package; which focuses on program policies, provincial legislative requirements (WorkSafeBC) and specific training requirements, such as oxygen therapy (material fees required).
  • Submitted a completed FA Instructor Training Record; which will include a successful co-teach on a full SFA recertification with an FAI Mentor.

Current Lifesaving First Aid Instructor Trainers: may teach an FAI course once they have:

  • Completed a First Aid Instructor Transfer package; which focuses on program policies, provincial legislative requirements (WorkSafeBC) and specific training requirements, such as oxygen therapy (material fees required).
  • Submitted a completed First Aid Instructor Trainer Training Record; which will include a successful co-teach on an SFA Recertification and full FAI course with a training mentor.

First Aid Instructor Inter-Agency Transfer Policy:

In recognition of the skills and experience qualified Canadian First Aid Instructors from specific agencies can bring to our program, First Aid Instructors who are currently certified with the: Canadian Red Cross, St. John‘s Ambulance, Canadian Ski Patrol or Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, may be eligible to become Lifesaving Society First Aid Instructors by completing the Inter-Agency Transfer process:

  • Providing proof of a current Standard First Aid Instructor certification from one of the following: Canadian Red Cross, St. John‘s Ambulance, Canadian Ski Patrol or Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.
  • Purchasing the current Lifesaving Society BC & Yukon First Aid Award Guide and instructional materials (material fees included in transfer fee)
  • Submitting a completed Lifesaving Society BC & Yukon Branch First Aid Instructor Training Record; which will include a successful co-teach on a full Lifesaving SFA course with an FAI Mentor.
  • Or
  • Submitting a completed Lifesaving Society BC & Yukon Branch First Aid Instructor Training Record and successfully complete a First Aid Instructor Cross Train course.

International Certification Transfer Policy:

Since each country has its own legislative requirements and each training agency has its own curriculum, we accept only Canadian Certifications Policies. In the BC & Yukon Branch, international candidates and instructors will need to obtain Canadian certifications in first aid, lifesaving and lifeguarding.

Recognizing that many international candidates have extensive skills and knowledge, the recommended process to attain certification is as follows:

  • Challenge the Lifesaving Society’s Bronze Medallion and Bronze Cross
  • Take a Canadian Standard First Aid course from a Branch recognized agency (Lifesaving Society, St. John Ambulance, Canadian Red Cross, Canadian Heart & Stroke, Canadian Ski Patrol)
  • Take a National Lifeguard course

Instructor & Trainer Recertification Policy

A Lifesaving Instructor (LSI) and Lifesaving Trainer (LST) certification is valid for two (2) years. After two years the LSI/LST will need to attend an in-person recertification in order to teach any of the Lifesaving programs or the Lifesaving Instructor courses. Certification extensions will not be granted.

If an expired LSI/LST submits a test sheet, the candidates will not be certified and will need to be re-evaluated by a current LSI/LST.

The Lifesaving Instructor/Instructor Trainer Recertification Policy states:

  • Any Lifesaving Instructor or Lifesaving Trainer who is within five (5) years from the date of certification/recertification can recertify by attending a recertification.
  • The new National Leadership System recognizes that competencies can be developed through a variety of methods and that these methods are often based on the individual. To honour this, any Lifesaving Instructor or Lifesaving Trainer who is more than five (5) years from the date of certification/recertification can contact the Branch office to determine an individual pathway for recertifying their certification. The pathway may include any or all of the following:
    • Purchase a copy of the current Lifesaving resources from the Branch.
    • Recertify Bronze Cross
    • Successfully completing an LSI Recertification
    • Successfully completing a Trainer Recertification
    • Apprentice on a Bronze course
    • Apprentice on a Lifesaving Instructor course
    • Work with a National Trainer on competency development

NL INSTRUCTOR/TRAINER RECERTIFICATION POLICY

A National Lifeguard Instructor (NLI) and National Lifeguard Trainer (NLT) certification is valid for two (2) years. After two years the NLI/NLT will need to attend an in-person recertification in order to teach any of the NL programs or the National Lifeguard Instructor courses. Certification extensions will not be granted.

If an expired NLI/NLT submits a test sheet, the candidates will not be certified and will need to be re-evaluated by a current NLI/NLT.

The National Lifeguard Instructor/National Lifeguard Trainer Recertification Policy states:

  • Any National Lifeguard Instructor or National Lifeguard Trainer who is within five (5) years from the date of certification/recertification can recertify by attending a recertification.
  • The new National Leadership System recognizes that competencies can be developed through a variety of methods and that these methods are often based on the individual. To honour this, any National Lifeguard Instructor or National Lifeguard Trainer who is more than five (5) years from the date of certification/recertification can contact the Branch office to determine an individual pathway for recertifying their certification. The pathway may include any or all of the following:
    • Purchase a copy of the current National Lifeguard resources from the Branch.
    • Recertify National Lifeguard options
    • Successfully completing an NLI Recertification
    • Successfully completing a Trainer Recertification
    • Apprentice on a National Lifeguard course
    • Apprentice on a National Lifeguard Instructor course
    • Work with a National Trainer on competency development

First Aid Instructor and Instructor Trainer Policy:

A Lifesaving First Aid Instructor and Lifesaving First Aid Instructor Trainer certification is valid for three (3) years. After three years the FAI/FAIT will need to attend a recertification to teach any of the Lifesaving First Aid programs or the First Aid Instructor courses. Certification extensions will not be granted. If an expired FAI/FAIT submits a test sheet, the candidates will not be certified, and they will need to be re-evaluated by a current FAI/FAIT.

The Lifesaving First Aid Instructor/Trainer Recertification Policy states that:

  • Any Lifesaving First Aid Instructor or Lifesaving First Aid Instructor Trainer who is within 5 years from the date of certification/recertification can recertify by attending a First Aid Instructor Recertification.
  • Any Lifesaving First Aid Instructor or Lifesaving First Aid Instructor Trainer who is within 5-10 years from the date of certification/recertification can recertify by completing a bridging package. The bridging steps include:
  • Any Lifesaving First Aid Instructor or Lifesaving First Aid Instructor Trainer who is more than 10 years past the date of certification/recertification will be required to take the FAI Short course again with the required apprenticeships.
    • Purchase a copy of the current Lifesaving First Aid or FAI resources from the Branch.
    • Recertify Standard First Aid
    • Complete the First Aid/CPR Online Update (1 hour)
    • Attend a Lifesaving First Aid Instructor Recertification
    • FAITs will be required to apprentice on 1 FAI full course once reappointed as a Lifesaving First Aid Instructor.
    • Submit the completed bridging package to the Branch office for review and approval - Keep a copy for your records.

Instructor/Trainer Recertification Policy

A Lifesaving First Aid Instructor (FAI) and Lifesaving First Aid Trainer (FAT) certification is valid for three (3) years. After three years the FAI/FAT will need to attend a recertification to teach any of the Lifesaving First Aid programs or the First Aid Instructor courses. Certification extensions will not be granted.

If an expired FAI/FAT submits a test sheet, the candidates will not be certified, and they will need to be re-evaluated by a current FAI/FAT.

The First Aid Instructor/Trainer Recertification Policy states:

  • Any First Aid Instructor who is within three (3) years from the date of certification/recertification can recertify by attending a recertification if they have taught a minimum of two (2) Lifesaving OFA Level 1 equivalent courses in the last three (3) years.
  • Any First Aid Instructor who is more than three (3) years from the date of certification/recertification can recertify by:
    • Purchasing a copy of the current Lifesaving First Aid program resources
    • Successfully completing a First Aid Instructor Recertification
    • Submitting a completed Training Record; which will include a successful co-teach on an Emergency First Aid (OFA Level 1) course or a Standard First Aid (OFA Level 1) course.
  • Any First Aid Trainer who is within five (5) years from the date of certification/recertification and holds a current First Aid Instructor certification can recertify by attending a Trainer recertification.
  • The new National Leadership System recognizes that competencies can be developed through a variety of methods and that these methods are often based on the individual. To honour this, any First Aid Trainer who is more than five (5) years from the date of certification/recertification can contact the Branch office to determine an individual pathway for recertifying their certification. The pathway may include any or all of the following:
    • Purchase a copy of the current First Aid program resources from the Branch
    • Successfully complete an Emergency First Aid (OFA Level 1) course
    • Successfully complete a Standard First Aid (OFA Level 1) course
    • Successfully complete a FAI Recertification
    • Successfully complete a Trainer Recertification
    • Apprentice on an Emergency First Aid (OFA Level 1) course or a Standard First Aid (OFA Level 1) course
    • Apprentice on a First Aid Instructor course
    • Work with a National Trainer on competency development

The Lifesaving Society’s reputation in aquatic safety and its status as a charitable organization impose high expectations of professional and ethical behaviour. The Society’s reputation depends on the integrity of its volunteers, instructors, staff and other representatives. Members of the Society carry a high burden of trust.

The way in which that trust is discharged determines to a great extent the Society’s success and the place of pride it enjoys in the aquatic community and in society at large. Individuals and organizations that interact with the Society can expect a high level of integrity and respect from the Society. This code of conduct outlines the ethical standards of conduct expected of individuals, employees, volunteers interacting with the Society, and details the Society’s policy with respect to workplace discrimination, bullying and harassment and workplace violence.

The Lifesaving Society respects the individual’s right to privacy and is committed to keeping personal information accurate, confidential, secure, and private. Except as specifically outlined in this policy, the Society does not disclose any individual’s personal information to any third parties.

What We Collect and Why: The Lifesaving Society collects information required to provide services to members and other individuals. This includes an individual’s name, address, phone number, email address, birth date, gender, and payment information.

The Lifesaving Society’s training programs are designed to maximize the participation and success of individuals of various ages, skill levels and abilities. The Lifesaving Society encourages its Affiliate Members to use their discretion in the placement and advancement of individuals with special needs. For example, if more practice would correct a problem identified by the instructor, then it is in the best interest of the participant to remain at the same level.

The Society recognizes that some individuals may be unable to achieve all the performance criteria (Must Sees) for some items. In the Society’s Swim for Life, Swim to Survive Programs, Swim Patrol, Bronze Star, Junior Lifeguard Club, Lifesaving Fitness, and Lifesaving Sport Fundamentals programs, if an individual can complete the item(s) with modifications or otherwise achieve the purpose statement(s), then the programmer/instructor should advance the participant to the next level as long as this does not compromise the safety of the individual or others.

While the Society welcomes the participation in vocational certifications and other Lifesaving Society rescue awards, certification is based solely on an individual’s ability to meet the performance criteria (Must Sees) without modification. Those lifesaving awards include Bronze Star, Bronze Medallion and Bronze Cross. Vocational certifications include: National Lifeguard, all Instructor awards, Coaching awards, Trainer appointments and in all First Aid awards.

Prerequisites are awards or certifications that must be earned prior to the start date of the course to which they apply.

Please note the following:

  • Proof of prerequisites must be available to the Instructor on the first day of the course. If prerequisites are not shown, we recommend that the candidate not be allowed to continue in the program as the Branch office will not allow exemptions/exceptions under any circumstances.
  • Acceptable proof of prerequisites can be:
  • Lifesaving Society temporary card (within 60 days)
  • Lifesaving Society issued award or certification card
  • First Aid certification card issued from St. John’s Ambulance, Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada, Canadian Red Cross, or Canadian Ski Patrol.
  • Find a Member print-out with a verification code.
  • If an award or certification is taken concurrently, it will be deemed to have been earned in the correct order.
  • Age prerequisites must be attained by the last day of the course and can be confirmed by a birth certificate, passport, medical card, or any other legal document/identification.
  • Candidates holding certifications from other provinces will be required to transfer their awards to the BC & Yukon Branch before a permanent card can be issued.
  • International certifications are not recognized.
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