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Coronavirus

Mass Youth Soccer Extends Suspension of all Soccer activities
 through and including Sunday, May 3, 2020
 
Massachusetts Youth Soccer’s vision statement partially reads that we are dedicated to the ongoing development of youth soccer players, coaches, referees, clubs and leagues in an inclusive, safe, affordable and fun environment.
 
Never did we imagine the word SAFE would take on a totally new meaning.  We have traditionally considered this to be a function of on-field activities.  Now, because of the escalating COVID-19 crisis, this word extends to staying off the fields and following the guidance of public health professionals and government agencies to help fight against the further spread of the virus.
 
We hope this communication finds you, your family and friends healthy and staying safe.  Within the past week our sincere thanks and best wishes go out to our medical heroes who are on the front line fighting COVID-19, many of whom are from our extended soccer family.
 
Based on the very latest information we’ve received from numerous sources, including medical professionals, effective immediately, Mass Youth Soccer is extending the suspension of all affiliated and sanctioned soccer activities statewide through and including Sunday, May 3, 2020.  For our member organizations (towns, clubs and leagues), this suspension continues to include, but is not limited to: all games (of all types), practices, clinics, training, tournaments, in-person meetings and Coaching Education Courses.
 
Assuming that circumstances do not warrant or require a further extension, commencing Monday, May 4, the suspension will be lifted on all soccer activities as noted above, except for league games (intown, travel and club) and tournaments, which may commence starting on Saturday, May 9, 2020.  
 
All Mass Youth Soccer affiliated League Presidents, with their concern being the ultimate health and well-being of our entire soccer community, are in unanimous agreement with this decision.
 
Our primary focus has been, and remains the safety and welfare of our players, coaches and referees. As importantly, we are concerned for the safety and well-being of our communities and seek to comply with medical directives on how best to stem the further spread of the virus. This is not just a soccer decision, but a public health decision.
 
We continue to closely monitor the situation via the federal, state and local public health agencies. We remain in contact with US Soccer, US Youth Soccer and other State Associations, who also have made significant cancellations and postponements, as well as the other major sport organizations and events throughout the country. Membership can expect regular updates as this situation continues to evolve with the next update planned on/about April 8th.
 
NOTE TO MEMBER ORGANIZATIONS - We are aware that some member organizations (town and club programs) have preliminarily discussed the prospect of  cancelling their “Spring Season”. Specifically, these organizations are referring to their existing schedules of games.  
 
Mass Youth Soccer understands the impulse but feels that it may be premature to take such actions since regular season and/or alternative season play remain an option.  Please keep in mind that If an organization decides to cancel their schedule it is still possible for other soccer activities to take place during the remaining season. These activities may include tryouts, training, clinics, skills competitions, intratown/club friendly games, friendlies against other towns/clubs.
 
Mass Youth Soccer is considering extending the Spring 2020 season into July or even August.  This will permit our member organizations to conduct those activities noted above beyond the typical June season end.  Our desire, when it is safe to do so, is to have our members provide opportunities for children to return to the fields in the best interests for their health and wellness.  There are so many physical and mental benefits to youth sports and we would like to be able to contribute to this phase of recovery through soccer. More information on a potential season extension will be provided in future communications. 

 

Mass Youth Soccer Extends Suspension of all Soccer activities through April 26, 2020
We hope this communication finds you, your family and friends healthy and safe. We would like to start by acknowledging the medical heroes who are on the front line of COVID-19, many of whom are from our extended soccer family. To the soccer parents and fans who work in the medical profession, we speak with one voice in solemn thanks and respect for your efforts against this ominous virus.  
 
Based on information received during the past week from numerous sources including medical professionals, effective immediately, Massachusetts Youth Soccer Association is extending the suspension of all affiliated and sanctioned soccer activities statewide through and including Sunday, April 26, 2020. For our member organizations (towns, clubs and leagues), this suspension continues to include, but is not limited to: all games (of all types), practices, clinics, training, tournaments, in-person meetings and Coaching Education Courses.
 
Assuming that circumstances do not warrant or require a further extension, commencing Monday, April 27, the suspension will be lifted on all soccer activities as noted above, except for league games (intown, travel and club) and tournaments,which may commence starting on Saturday, May 2, 2020.  
 
All Massachusetts Youth Soccer affiliated League Presidents, with their concern being the ultimate health and well-being of our entire soccer community, are in unanimous agreement with this decision.
 
Our primary focus has been, and remains the safety and welfare of our players, coaches and referees. As importantly, we are concerned for the safety and well-being of our communities and seek to comply with medical directives on how best to stem the spread of the virus. This is not just a soccer decision, but a public health decision.
 
We continue to closely monitor the situation via the federal, state and local health agencies. We remain in contact with US Soccer, US Youth Soccer and other State Associations, who have made significant cancellations and postponements, as well as the other major sport organizations and events throughout the country. Membership can expect regular updates as this situation continues to evolve.
 
As noted in our prior suspension communication, we don’t take these types of decisions lightly. But, in the interest of preserving the health and safety of the entire soccer community, in addition to all others statewide, we cannot emphasize enough that Mass Youth Soccer's primary commitment is the health and safety of all members, players, coaches, referees, parents, spectators and volunteers.
 
A further update from Mass Youth Soccer will be provided on/about April 1st.
Here are a number of different resources and communications from the WHO, CDC and other public health organizations regarding this novel coronavirus:
 
U.S. Department of State - Country Specific Travel Information
 
Proper Health Habits
In the meantime, we can better protect ourselves by reinforcing health safety and best practices for illness prevention - to that end, please read and follow the steps listed below:
 
  • Practice “Social Distancing” staying at least 6 feet from others when out in public.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth prior to proper washing or disinfecting.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow the CDC's recommendations for using a face mask.
  • CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including Coronavirus.
  • CDC recommended face masks should be used by people who show symptoms to help prevent the spread of the disease.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

 

PREVIOUS ANNOUNCEMENTS BELOW

 
 
Mass Youth Soccer Suspends all activities through April 15th
 
Effective Friday, March 13, 2020, Massachusetts Youth Soccer Association is suspending all affiliated and sanctioned soccer activities statewide through April 15th due to the evolving COVID-19 situation.   For our member organizations (towns, clubs and leagues) this includes, but is not limited to: all games, practices, clinics, training, tournaments, in-person meetings and Coaching Education Courses.
 
Trusting that players, coaches, referees and spectators would never knowingly compromise themselves or others, the fact is that our sport and its related activities provide an opportunity for the virus to spread which we feel is our duty to help avoid (excerpt from the CDC below):
 
“...COVID-19 is mainly spread through respiratory droplets (sneeze, cough, or sweat) when in close contact (within 6 feet) OR by touching a surface with such droplets and then touching one’s own mouth, nose or eyes...”
 
As a result, both US Soccer and US Youth Soccer have made a similar decision regarding soccer activities under their purview.  They asked the state associations to assess the risks and benefits of postponement, suspension and/or cancellation of upcoming events and Mass Youth Soccer - along with many other state associations - has taken this guidance with the highest level of concern.  Our decision to suspend soccer related activities and promote social distancing was made in accordance with guidance we received from public health and medical professionals at the federal, state and local levels. We don’t take these types of decisions lightly.  But, in the interest of making the health and safety of the entire soccer community, in addition to all others statewide, paramount, we know this is the right step to take.
 
Mass Youth Soccer will evaluate conditions on a continuing basis to determine when it is appropriate to reinstate our affiliated and sanctioned soccer activities.  Further communications will be provided via email and on our website.
US Soccer has suspended all Coaching Education Courses until after April 30th. Currently scheduled courses will be rescheduled promptly after the suspension of activities is lifted. Currently registered coaches will be credited with prior payment for use towards a future US Soccer Coach Education course.
 
Additionally, here are a number of different resources and communications from the CDC and other organizations regarding the Coronavirus:
 
U.S. Department of State - Country Specific Travel Information
 
We cannot emphasize enough that Mass Youth Soccer’s primary commitment at all times is the health and safety of all members, players, coaches, referees, parents, spectators and volunteers.
 
Proper Health Habits
 
In the meantime, while we all help protect ourselves is it important to reinforce health safety and best practices for illness prevention, please read the list below:
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth prior to proper washing or disinfecting.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow the CDC's recommendations for using a face mask.
  • CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including Coronavirus.
  • CDC recommended face masks should be used by people who show symptoms to help prevent the spread of the disease.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
2020 AGM Postponed - Update 3/11/2020
 
Given the evolving health concerns of our soccer community the 2020 Massachusetts Youth Soccer Annual General Meeting (AGM), originally scheduled for Saturday, March 14, 2020 in Leominster, MA, will be postponed.
 
This decision has been made in accordance with the guidance of public health and medical professionals as well as the ongoing acceleration of the coronavirus in towns in which our soccer families reside. The recent state of emergency declaration by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts was also a factor in the decision since we endeavor to exercise caution on behalf of our soccer community.
 
Your Board of Directors is working on alternatives with regard to the three main components of the AGM agenda: 1) election of an Officer and Directors, 2) training support on US Soccer Connect from Stack Sports and 3) collaborative efforts on standardized Tolerance Policies and Codes of Conduct. Once we have an alternative finalized we will communicate this to all member organization leaders.
 
All of us were really looking forward to this innovative annual meeting format providing our members with the opportunity to learn, share and be heard. As noted above we will develop alternatives to help us accomplish our goals.

We’d like to thank all of our Mass Youth Soccer member organizations, families, staff and volunteers, for your ongoing support as we manage our programming given the current health environment. The safety and security of our soccer community is, and always will be, our highest priority!

 

 
 
 
 
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