Institute of Conflict Management
Training Standards

Institute of Conflict Management Training Standards for Quality Award Centre Approval

Training Standards

Standard 1: Pre-Training

Standard 1.1 Training needs analysis

1.1.1 The training needs analysis demonstrates an understanding of the organisation and its context.

1.1.2 Training is delivered with reference to the organisation’s policies and procedures which may be updated following the training.

1.1.3 Expectations with respect to training environment are agreed, to include floor coverings, furniture, space, availability of first aid equipment and qualified first aider, drinking water, cleaning materials and personal protective equipment where necessary.

1.1.4 Expectations of levels of fitness required and physical demands of training agreed.

1.1.5 Top management demonstrate an awareness of the importance of a proactive and preventative approach so that organisations become less reliant on reactive risk control measures.

1.1.6 Organisational roles, responsibilities and authorities are clearly established.

1.1.7 Where risk assessments identify foreseeable risks, the training needs assessment accurately and honestly describes foreseeable and necessary workers responses.

1.1.8 The training needs assessment takes account of the particular circumstances of the service setting and individual vulnerabilities of service users and workers.

1.1.9 When risk assessments are being reviewed, they are informed by incident and accident records, including near misses, current risk assessments and reasonably foreseeable changes to circumstances.

1.1.10 Employers have systems in place to provide adequate information, instruction, training and supervision to promote the health and safety of workers, service users and others.

1.1.11 Employers establish transparent processes to acknowledge the hazardous nature of any foreseeable incidents and of any restrictive interventions.

1.1.12 The best interests of any person who may need to be subjected to restraint or restriction is promoted and balanced against the best interests of workers, other service users and others.

1.1.13 Due regard is paid to ensuring a balanced approach which promotes the safety and dignity of all workers, service users and others.

1.1.14 Any techniques used to restrain or restrict liberty of movement are reasonable and proportionate to the circumstances, taking into account the likelihood and impact of harm resulting both from hazardous behaviour and any corrective actions.

1.1.15 Techniques used to restraint or restrict liberty apply the minimum force for the shortest time, consistent with safeguarding service users, workers and others.

1.1.16 The number of course members that can safely be trained within the available space and the ratio of trainers to course members is determined as part of the training needs assessment.

1.1.17 The ratio of trainers to course members will normally not exceed one trainer to twelve course members for any practical training that includes restraints.

Standard 1.2 Developing the training programme

1.2.1 The programme covers both theory and practical elements which are relevant to the service setting.

1.2.2 Blended teaching methods may include online content, in person presentations and demonstrations, pre and post course documentation and audio-visual content.

1.2.3 Participatory teaching methods may include small group discussions, table top exercises, online exercises and practice of physical techniques.

1.2.4 Theory elements allow for individual study, small group work, and whole group discussion, question and answer.

1.2.5 Additional theory work may be completed before and after the course as part of an ongoing training programme.

1.2.6 A clear rationale explains the inclusion of all specified personal safety and restraint elements in the programme.

Standard 1.3 Risk assessments

1.3.1 Risk assessment covers hazard identification, assessment of risks and opportunities for preventing and managing hazardous behaviour. An evidence based training needs analysis is undertaken by a knowledgeable and competent person.

1.3.2 All physical techniques included in the programme have been risk assessed by competent professionals or organisations. Where necessary independent medical and psychological assessments must be included.

1.3.3 Risk assessments are regularly updated, at least once every two years.

Standard 1.4 Training is delivered within the context of an explicit commitment to a balanced approach towards the reduction of risk, restraint and restriction

1.4.1 Training providers make clear to commissioning organisations that the purpose of training is to promote a balanced approach towards reducing risk, restraint and restriction of all kinds.

1.4.2 Commissioners of training have organisational plans in place for reducing risk, restraint and restriction in a balanced way.

1.4.3 Commissioners of training have plans for individuals in place to reduce risk, restraint and restriction in a balanced way.

1.4.4 Plans are reviewed following any significant change or incident. In the absence of any such change or incident they should be reviewed regularly, at least annually.

1.4.5 The message of minimum force is reiterated throughout the programme.

1.4.6 Training makes clear that decisions on whether or not to use restraint will always require consideration of individual circumstances and is a matter of professional judgement. 

1.4.7 Training makes clear that any use of restraint carries some degree of risk. Risks may be to the person exhibiting hazardous behaviour or to others.

1.4.8 Training makes clear that risks associated with taking action need to be balanced against the risks associated with other courses of action, including the risks of taking no action at all

1.4.9 Training makes clear that assessing risk involves using available information and personal experience to make reasonable judgements and weighing up options.

1.4.10 Training makes clear that that assessing risk involves attempting to predict the situations in which hazardous behaviour may occur and estimating the likelihood and impact of any harm that could result.

1.4.11Training makes clear that when considering whether to use restraint workers should pay due regard to the best interest principle, consider the best interests of the person exhibiting hazardous behaviour and those around them and ask themselves:

  1. "What would I want somebody else to do in a similar situation if that was my child or someone else I care about."
  2. Training should acknowledge that unplanned interventions require professional judgement to be exercised in difficult situations, often requiring split-second decisions in response to unforeseen events or incidents.
  3. Training should acknowledge that there might be occasions where suitably trained workers may not be on hand.
  4. Training should acknowledge that such decisions, known as dynamic risk assessments, will include a judgement about the capacity of the individual exhibiting hazardous behaviour at that moment to make a safe choice. 
  5. Training should make clear that such an unforeseen and unplanned emergency response is evidence of a requirement to review the training needs assessment and provide appropriate training or implement other necessary corrective action to prevent reoccurrence.
  6. Training should make clear that worker training and supervision of operational performance should support dynamic risk assessment. Reliance on emergency responses from inadequately trained staff does not constitute competent risk assessment and control.

Standard 1.5 Training providers ensure that all who can make a contribution are participants in the development and delivery of training

1.5.1 Training makes clear the distinction between exposure, experience, expertise and technical competence in relation to physical skills.

1.5.2 Those involved in developing and delivering training pay due regard to the views of those who have personal experience of being exposed to hazardous behaviour, of exhibiting hazardous behaviour themselves and of being subjected to hazardous behaviour from others. 

1.5.3 This should include the experience of being subjected to the use of physical restraint and personal safety equipment being recommended.

1.5.4 Those involved in developing and delivering training pay due regard to the views of experts with extensive relevant knowledge and expertise in the development and delivery of training.

1.5.5 Those involved in developing and delivering training have experience that is relevant to the service setting.

Standard 1.6 Agreeing delivery plans

1.6.1 Training providers and commissioners agree the delivery arrangements with the commissioning organisation as far in advance as is reasonably practicable.

Standard 1.7 Making available accessible course information

1.7.1 Important course information is made available in an accessible format to course participants in advance, giving as much notice as is reasonably practicable.

1.7.2 Training providers make available to course members information in a variety of formats to meet a variety of needs, for example, digitally via easily accessible websites, and in-course materials provided to each individual which they can keep for future reference.

Standard 1.8 Compliments and complaints policy

1.8.1 Training providers make available a policy that clearly describes how questions, compliments, concerns, and complaints will be processed and dealt with, and which sets out clear timescales for them to be addressed.

Standard 2.1 Dynamic Risk Assessment

2.1.1 The training venue is risk assessed to ensure that it is safe for the delivery of practical training.

2.1.2 The practical training area is large enough for the intended group (ideally two square metres per course member when engaged in physical exercise at any one time).

2.1.3 The practical training area is kept clean and clear of obstacles through dynamic risk assessment throughout the delivery of training.

2.1.4 Suitable furniture and equipment is provided including the use of appropriate mats where necessary.

2.1.5 The training venue is risk assessed to ensure that it is safe for the delivery of theory training.

2.1.6 Where applicable, suitable audio-visual equipment is available to allow all course members to access information.

Standard 2.2 Balancing human rights, the best interest principle and health and safety

2.2.1 Training includes an overview of the relevant legislation, regulations, and guidance that apply to the particular service setting.

2.2.2 The training presents a balanced approach towards the promotion of individual Human Rights and Health and Safety.

2.2.3 The training presents a balanced approach to the competing rights of different individuals and groups.

Standard 2.3 Responding to bad practice

2.3.1 Training covers how workers should respond when they see bad practice.

2.3.2 Training covers the concepts of duty of candour, duty of care and whistleblowing.

Standard 2.4 Working cultures

2.4.1 Training covers the development of working cultures, both positive and negative.

2.4.2 Training covers how individuals can influence groups, and be influenced by them, along with how group attitudes contribute towards good and bad practice.

Standard 2.5 Considered decision making

2.5.1 Training covers the thought processes which promote and support effective planning to reduce unnecessary risk, restraint and restriction.

2.5.2 Training covers the thought processes involved in dynamic risk assessment and how to record those thought processes using clear unambiguous language.

2.5.3 Training reiterates the simple message that decisions should be led by what course members would want somebody else to do if someone they cared about was exhibiting or experiencing potentially hazardous behaviour.

Standard 2.6 Primary proactive and preventative behaviour management and support strategies

2.6.1 Training covers a range of context specific proactive and preventative measures to maintain equilibrium and prevent the genesis of hazardous behaviours.

2.6.2 Training covers the management of arousal levels of individuals and groups.

2.6.3 Training covers the development of organisational risk, restraint and restriction reduction plans.

2.6.4 Training covers the development of individual positive behaviour management and support plans.

2.6.5 Training covers how planning should take account of specific circumstances, objects, situations and interactions which can cause individuals and groups to become over-excited, anxious or hostile, increasing the likelihood of hazardous behaviours occurring.

2.6.6 Training covers the development of organisational risk, restraint and restriction reduction plans which prevent boredom and promote an atmosphere of calm, comfort, affinity and good humour, in order to reduce the likelihood of hazardous behaviours developing.

2.6.7Training covers how management of personal space, body language, posture, gestures and tone of voice can reduce the likelihood of hazardous behaviour.

2.6.8 Training covers the use of scripts and checklists to reduce the likelihood and impact of hazardous behaviour.

Standard 2.7 Secondary escalation prevention strategies

2.7.1 Training covers secondary strategies (both non-restrictive and restrictive) which are intended to manage boredom and calm over-excited and agitated behaviours.

2.7.2 Training covers secondary strategies (both non-restrictive and restrictive) which may involve withdrawing individuals and groups from environments and situations they find challenging to prevent the escalation of hazardous behaviours.

2.7.3 Training covers the use of scripts and checklists related to de-escalation and diversion.

Standard 2.8 Tertiary corrective actions

2.8.1 Training covers tertiary corrective actions (both non-restrictive and restrictive) such as giving and repeating clear calm directions, allowing pauses when it is safe to do so and the use of minimal force to prompt and redirect.

2.8.2 Training covers personal safety responses to prevent or disengage from unwanted physical contact but do not involve physically immobilising the other person.

2.8.3 Training covers the use of tertiary corrective actions, which may include the use of personal protection techniques, manual restraint or protective equipment.

Standard 2.9 Elevated risks

2.9.1 Training covers the factors most likely to contribute to elevated risk, paying due regard to the individual circumstances of the service setting and individual and group vulnerabilities. This may include medical conditions and use of substances.

2.9.2 Training is informed by current, evidence based, good practice in relation to balancing elevated risks associated with a range of body positions (including positional asphyxia). 

2.9.3 Training should include accurate and current information about the impact of standing, seated, prone and supine body positions on lung function.

2.9.4 Training should include accurate and current information about the biomechanical effectiveness and limitations of the techniques provided.

2.9.5 Training should include accurate and current information on the relative demands of different techniques in relation to physical strength and body morphology.

2.9.6 Training should consider and balance the risks to both workers and service users, emphasising the need for individuals to conduct their own personal risk assessments and seek medical advice where necessary.

2.9.7 Course members are provided with accurate and current detailed written information about elevated risks.

Standard 2.10 Emergency procedures

2.10.1 Training covers what to do in an emergency – medical or otherwise – paying due regard to the specific needs of the service setting.

2.10.2 Training emphasises that organisations must not reply on unplanned emergency responses in circumstances when the need for planned procedures is reasonably foreseeable.

Standard 2.11 Recording and reporting

2.11.1 Course members are provided with information about the meaning of the words used in local policies, risk assessments, plans and incident reports. (For example, liberty protection safeguards, restriction of liberty, deprivation of liberty, seclusion, withdrawal, time-out, manual restraint, personal protection, chemical restraint, mechanical restraint and clinical holding).

Standard 2.12 Use of data to inform plans to reduce risk, restraint and restriction

2.12.1 Training covers the relevant regulatory and organisational requirements for recording and reporting the use of personal safety responses, restraints, and other restrictions.

2.12.2 Training covers the protocols for recording any injuries associated with the use of those responses and using the data to inform future medical reviews of techniques.

Standard 2.13 Post incident support, review and learning

2.13.1 Training covers the rationale for post-incident support in the immediate aftermath of an incident and any necessary ongoing support.

2.13.2 Training explains the rationale for a more considered post incident review and learning process after the incident so that workers and the organisation learn lessons for the future.

2.13.3 Training explains the importance of ensuring that workers are kept informed about incidents and the outcomes of investigations that are relevant to them.

Standard 2.14 Trauma informed care and support, promoting mental fitness

2.14.1 The training covers how past experiences and trauma may impact on individual experiences of restraint and restriction for some individuals. For example, supine restraints may be particularly traumatic for victims of sexual abuse.

Standard 2.15 Risk, restraint, and restriction reduction theory

2.15.1 The training covers the rationale and theory that supports a balanced approach towards reducing risk, restraint, and restriction.

Standard 2.16 Safety during and after training

2.16.1 Training is delivered with an emphasis on safety and dynamic risk assessment.

2.16.2 The stop signal is demonstrated and explained before practical elements. It is made clear that anyone may use it if they see something unsafe.

2.16.3 All course members, on both initial and refresher courses, are given their own copy of the current version of essential safety information provided as part of the training course.

2.16.4 Certification is not given to any course member who has not competed the programme and been provided with this information.

Standard 3.1 Competence, assessment and feedback

3.1.1 Training includes a competence-based assessment of both theory and practical elements based on clear assessment criteria.

Standard 3.2 Record keeping

3.2.1 Training providers maintain complete, accurate, and up to date records of each course they deliver.

Standard 3.3 Reporting concerns

3.3.1 Training providers have a policy that outlines the procedure for handling any concerns about the conduct of individual course participants during training sessions.

Standard 3.4 Course evaluations

3.4.1 All training is evaluated post-delivery, using an evidence-based framework.

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