Forum: Share your SI/NOR language.

Sailing Instructions for using 'three minute justice'

Steve Comen
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Race Officer
  • Club Judge
As part of the reponse to Covid-19, some of the Texas Sailing Assocation junior regattas are specifying that three minute justice will be used for protests. I am working on the race documents for an upcoming TSA regatta, and need SIs for three minute justice that comply with RRS. I did a quick look on the web for existing SIs, but most do not even come close to complying with RRS. In most cases the SI says nothing about what rules are changed to allow three minute justice, what protests are allowed to be resolved with three minute justice and which ones aren't, etc.
The best I have seen are for the Weekend One-Design Series at American Yacht Club. They include the following instruction:

14 PROTESTS AND REQUESTS FOR REDRESS
For protests for violation of the rules of Part 2 or RRS 28, 31, 41, 42, and 43 will follow the “three minute justice” system as described in Addendum C. This changes RRS 61 and 63. Addendum C then gives a description of how three minute justice works.

There are some issues with this, including:
  • The SI does not comply with 85.1 since it does not explicitly state the change to rules 61 and 63. I think it could be worded as 'Addendum C replaces rules 61 and 63', but then the addendum would need to include lots of things about protest time limits, race committee protests, protest committee protests, etc. 
  • Also, should the SI remove rule 65.2 requiring the party to be able to get a copy in writing when everything is done orally? And how does rule 66 apply?

What I am really asking is does anyone has SI wording for three minute justice that fully complies with RRS?

Thanks,
Steve
Created: 20-Aug-18 21:53

Comments

Greg Dargavel
Nationality: Canada
Certifications:
  • Club Race Officer
  • National Judge
1
I've never heard of "three minute justice". Is it some form of ultra-fast arbitration? Surely even junior sailors can handle 10 minutes (with their masks on) for arbitration. IMHO helping junior sailors develop includes helping them develop skills in the rules and procedures of our sport.
Created: 20-Aug-18 22:05
Steve Comen
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Race Officer
  • Club Judge
0
Yes, it is mostly used for team racing where you want to very quickly make a decision between races. The protestor gets one minute to state their case, the protestee gets one minute to respond, and then you have one minute to make a decision. It works well for most issues.

I agree about arbitration and generally prefer it for junior regattas. I think they are just trying to avoid people having to come to the clubhouse.
Created: 20-Aug-18 22:13
Matthew Curtiss
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Race Officer In Training
0
Created: 20-Aug-18 22:32
Tim Hohmann
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Judge
0
The procedure I found through Google said that a juror would be selected from the other competitors by mutual agreement of the parties - is that part of your procedure? I wonder if you couldn't just invoke Appendix T arbitration and say that the arbitrator may be selected by mutual agreement of the parties?

Otherwise, just do Appendix T and try have a couple of designated arbitrators available.
Created: 20-Aug-18 22:45
Steve Comen
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Race Officer
  • Club Judge
0
Thanks Matthew for the example and Tim for the comment on arbitration. One important item I left out- the OA wants this to happen on the water without requiring a written protest form. A lot of the sailors are used to this from team racing, but when it is used in team racing it is usually implemented as a modification to D2 so the SIs are not appropriate for fleet regattas.
Created: 20-Aug-18 22:56
Philip Hubbell
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Race Officer
  • Judge In Training
0
Yeah, we also called it "parking lot justice."
We took a vote of inexperienced, untrained crew members to decide.
That fleet of V15s soon failed and sat unused.
That is real parking lot justice.
Created: 20-Aug-18 23:10
Tim Hohmann
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Judge
0
Presumably the requirements for informing the protestee at the time of the incident remain unchanged?

T1(a) allows a competitor to take a Post-Race penalty at any time after the race until a protest hearing commences, and doesn't necessarily require a protest to be filed or an arbitration hearing to be held. So maybe it's just guidance to competitors that they should confer on the water after the race and decide if one of them should accept a Post-Race Penalty. If the protestor isn't satisfied they can still file the protest.

I know of one local club that, in addition to offering arbitration/post-race scoring penalty, specifies that any DSQ that results from a protest hearing is scored as a DNE. That will also encourage competitors to settle their disputes between themselves.
Created: 20-Aug-18 23:13
P
John Grills
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Judge
  • Umpire In Training
0
Here is a snippet from a youth race SI in July
image.png 130 KB
Created: 20-Aug-19 02:35
Steve Comen
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Race Officer
  • Club Judge
0
John, thanks for the snippet. Unfortunately it is not enforceable as written- this procedure changes rules 60.2, 60.3, 60.4, 61.2, 63.1, 63.2, possibly 63.5 and probably others, but it does not comply with 85.1; it says protests will be handled between races, which leaves open what happens for protests from the last race; it provides no mechanism for dealing with protests relating to class rules, support persons, misconduct, etc.

Part of this can be fixed with the wording from AYC of "Protests for violation of the rules of Part 2 or RRS 28, 31, 41, 42, and 43 will follow the “three minute justice” system..." but even with that it still changes 61.3, 63.1, 63.2, and probably others; these all need to be documented to comply with 85.1
Created: 20-Aug-19 03:30
P
Michael Butterfield
Nationality: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
  • International Race Officer
0
I do not think you can just remove the boats rights like that. In any event you rush a hearing how can you remove the right to appeal. You cannot without a jury. 
Created: 20-Aug-19 05:42
Tim Hohmann
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Judge
0
It sounds to me like "3 Minute Justice" involves boats taking voluntary penalties. No appeal for that. 

If a penalty is imposed by a jury, even an abbreviated on-the-water hearing, I think you need to allow appeals. Which means the abbreviated hearing will still need to document facts, conclusions, decision. 3 Minute Justice is one thing, Kangaroo Court is another. 
Created: 20-Aug-19 06:35
Steve Comen
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Race Officer
  • Club Judge
0
I went ahead and removed the 'three minute justice' from the NoR and will just use appendix T for the regatta. However, the TSA Commodore and I have been having a continuing discussion about how to handle this in the SIs. Here is what I think is an almost workable example from the SI's for Severn Sailing Association's Snipe Colonial Cup, based on the prodedure documented by Watch Hill Yacht Club at:  http://www.whyc.net/Justice.php:

17.2 The protesting and protested skippers are encouraged to use the Three Minute Justice system outlined below to resolve the protest. If either skipper does not agree, the protester prepares a written protest and submits it per 17.3. If both skippers agree to use the Three Minute Justice, the process proceeds as follows:
  17.2 (a) Both skippers must meet as soon as practicable after returning to shore and agree to use the Three Minute Justice system.
  17.2 (b) Each skipper selects a member of the fleet not involved in the protest to act as a juror.
  17.2 (c) The two skippers and the two jurors repair to a private area. They remain standing. The protester has one minute to describe the incident including when and where it occurred and the rule(s) believed broken. The protestee then has one minute to present his/her side of the case. The skippers and jurors may question each other. If any of the four want a witness to resolve a matter of fact, the witness has one minute to present his/her testimony.
  17.2 (d) The jurors then have one minute to reach a decision. If the jurors are unable to agree on a resolution because of the complexity or difficulty of the protest, the jurors will inform the protester. If the protestor wishes to pursue the protest further, a written protest per 17.3 must be filed. The jurors inform the Race Committee of their decision.

17.3 is just the normal description of where forms can be found, where they will be turned in, etc.

In this case the system is entirely voluntary and does not involve changes to the protest procedures in the RRS. The only issue I see with this is the last sentence. The 'jurors' are members of the fleet who are not affiliiated with the race committee or the protest committee. Nothing in the RRS allows the Race Committee to modify a boat's score based on input from these 'jurors' without having a hearing. This can be fixed by changing the last sentence to something like: "If the decision of the jurors is that one or more boats shoould take a Post-Race Penalty, the boat(s) shall inform the Race Committee of the penalty to be taken." The exact wording will depend on whether you want to allow a scoring penalty or if the offending boat(s) must retire.
Created: 20-Aug-20 16:33
P
John Grills
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Judge
  • Umpire In Training
0
My concern is that if the jurors are members of the fleet that is racing, then their decision could have a direct impact on their own final place in a given race.
Created: 20-Aug-20 16:57
Philip Hubbell
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Race Officer
  • Judge In Training
0
1. An Organizing Authority that cannot come up with even a single minimally qualified Judge-In-Training to serve as Arbitrator has no business running regattas.
2. A national governing body of sailing that has made Judge training and qualification so unobtainable, either financially or logistically, that Judges are not plentiful and eager has failed its mission and failed its sport.
Created: 20-Aug-20 17:19
Tim Hohmann
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Judge
0
I don't think I'd refer to the members of the fleet selected by the sailors as "jurors". They may be arbitrators or simply advisers. If they're arbitrators you might add that the arbitrators selected by the competitors are considered to have been appointed as such by the race committee. There is a potential for conflict of interest there but it's alleviated, I think, by allowing each competitor to select an arbitrator.

Similarly, in 17.2(d) it should be clear that this is a meeting, not a hearing, and the arbitrators/advisers do not reach a decision. They offer an opinion about how they believe a protest hearing would decide the incident. The decision whether to take a voluntary Post-Race Penalty, or to retire, or to press for a protest hearing lies with the competitors.

Perhaps consider extending the protest time limit for competitors who use this process to something like "15 minutes after completion of the 3 Minute Justice meeting for the incident" so a protestor who isn't satisfied with the result doesn't lose the opportunity to protest due to the time required for the process.

Should probably state that competitors shall inform the race committee in writing of their decision to take a voluntary penalty, and you might state that such a decision once delivered is irrevocable, not subject to appeal or redress.
Created: 20-Aug-20 18:00
Doc Sullivan
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • National Umpire
1
We routinely use the “abbreviated hearing” in college events as the results are often needed right away so the boats can go to the next stage. Similar to arbitration it works best when only 2 boats are involved   3 umpires/judges sit in a boat with the protestor and protestee and each presents their story which includes validity issues. Notes are taken by the jury for future reference in case someone may want a copy of the protest.  Unlike arbitration the results are binding.  There may be sometimes that it may have to go to a full hearing but that is rare.  These are events where on the water judging or umpiring is used so the judge/umpire saw part or all of an incident so that information is included in the hearing.  
When I did an online protest day with 15 participants it was clear that people needed help with writing facts found and decisions.  I am sure that this is so with abbreviated hearings as well.  I think we could all do better.  The wording for such hearings is in the College Procedural Rules

Doc
Created: 20-Aug-21 16:20
P
John Mooney
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Umpire
  • Regional Race Officer
0
I would respectfully suggest that if you make the process entirely voluntary, you need to take the same pains that a careful arbitrator does to see to it that he/she isn't effectively just coaching the parties for a later protest hearing. That is to say that the abbreviated panel should consider their decision privately, and provide the parties with only that decision, and not any of the facts or reasoning supporting it. The parties can then accept the decision or not, as in an arbitration meeting (if either chooses not to, they may decline and go to a full hearing).

Like Appendix T, it helps if the abbreviated process carries a lesser penalty than the full hearing, to encourage the boat taking the penalty to do so, rather than take another shot in the hearing room.

All of this may be difficult for the recruited panel members to understand and follow, but if the process is voluntary, it's important. I prefer the ICSA binding solution that Doc refers to, but it wants three pretty skilled judges to make it work well, I think, and that may also be difficult to achieve.

One other observation; if you're going to draw your protest committee from the same racing fleet, everyone in the room is an interested party, and you'd better have very explicit agreement up front that all parties accept that conflict.
Created: 20-Aug-27 04:00
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