COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., and CHARLOTTE, N.C. — USA Fencing, the national governing body for the Olympic and Paralympic sport of fencing in the United States, has joined forces with the award-winning team at RealResponse to offer 320-ENGARDE, a new texting hotline that allows members of the fencing community to safely report suspected abuse, issues or other potential violations of USA Fencing policies.
By texting 320-ENGARDE (320-364-2733), fencers, coaches, parents and others in the community can submit a report — either anonymously or on the record — about anything concerning that they experience, witness or learn about.
Put simply, this texting hotline will encourage fencers to remain “en garde” both on and off the strip as the fencing community rallies together to recognize and report abuse or other issues of concern.
When a text message is sent to 320-ENGARDE, the contents are confidentially and securely stored in the RealResponse platform. Anonymity is preserved because none of the reporter’s contact information, including their phone number, can be viewed by USA Fencing.
After a message is received, a designated USA Fencing representative can respond via text message to gather additional information — all while allowing the submitter to remain anonymous (if they chose) throughout the process.
The underlying goal behind 320-ENGARDE, says USA Fencing CEO Phil Andrews, is to streamline the reporting process by offering an additional tool to members.
“At USA Fencing, we believe that reporting a concern should be as simple as picking up your smartphone,”Andrews says. “Our partnership with RealResponse and the debut of 320-ENGARDE gives members a vital resource that’s easy to use, easy to remember and anonymous.”
David Chadwick, founder and CEO of RealResponse, says his team is “proud to add USA Fencing to the growing number of national governing bodies that RealResponse partners with.”
“The proactive work that Phil and his team have undertaken to ensure the health and well-being of all in the organization is commendable,” he says, “and we look forward to helping them in this very worthwhile and much-needed element of their business.”
While 320-ENGARDE is a powerful tool, it doesn’t replace other reporting options offered through FenceSafe, USA Fencing’s suite of safety resources. Other reporting options remain available, allowing members to share concerns through an online form, email or phone call.
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