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Recently, there have been questions raised in social media regarding the specifics of the PDGA Disciplinary Process. This process may not be well known, especially by some of the newer members. Now seems like a good opportunity to let our members review the system that has been in place since October 15, 2009. While no member wants to be personally involved in this part of the sport, unfortunately, there sometimes are circumstances that require oversight and intervention.

The disciplinary process begins with a written complaint from a PDGA member or from the Tournament Director report when there is a disqualification involved.  The chairperson of the Disciplinary Committee decides if the complaint is warranted and presents it to the committee. During this process, the chairperson attempts to procure written statements and initiate phone conversations with all parties involved.  The statements/findings are presented to the committee for review and discussion. All infractions, past and present, are taken into consideration. Infractions incurred while under probation and multiple infractions can typically result in a combination of suspension periods. After discussion of all relevant considerations, a choice of disciplinary actions is presented for a vote in the form of a poll.  Each committee member then votes on an action that he/she feel are the most appropriate match with the infraction or infractions. Those decisions, of course, are informed by the collective experience of the committee and the evolving history of the committee’s findings.

The Disciplinary committee next sends its recommendation to the President of the Board of Directors.  The President then reviews all of the information provided and either decides to accept the recommendation or to request additional consideration.  The recommendation is also discussed with the Executive Board of Directors and it is either accepted or modified by vote of the Executive Board.  A letter is then constructed and sent to the Executive Director of the PDGA who both emails and mails a certified letter to the members involved. The resulting disciplinary action goes into effect the day of the email/postmark.

A more detailed form of our disciplinary process can be found at http://www.pdga.com/pdga-disciplinary-process

The member is allowed to appeal as written in our policy. PDGA does not divulge specific details of the findings until such time as the member has exhausted all of his/her appeal rights. Such public discussion is necessarily limited to protect the privacy rights of the individuals involved.  

These concerns are both legal and ethical. The posting of such information could easily jeopardize the interests of a member if it came to the attention of a potential employer or other interested party. PDGA would only divulge such information if the member involved were to provide a signed letter granting that permission. 

PDGA is, of course, a non-profit organization.  Our sport is an emerging one.  As such, we have to work consistently to maintain a positive and professional image.  We do, of course, provide a Competition/Rule book and have all of our disciplinary processes posted on our website.  We count on our members to help each other follow the rules and we hope that members who have questions will feel free to contact us directly.  Please remember that we are all disc golfers and we do care. Our policies have been developed by members and are in place to help us keep our members safe and to provide a fair and consistent process.

In summary, this is a challenging job and we are volunteers. The disciplinary committee is always interested in hearing from members who are willing to serve in some capacity as some part of this difficult, but essential part of sustaining our sport.

Rebecca Duffy 
PDGA Board President 
Speaking for the PDGA Board of Directors and Disciplinary Committee