COVID-19 and Return to Play Update – September 18, 2020

As everyone is aware; yesterday the government announced additional measures in 3 of the Provincial Hotspots with the proviso they could expand the regions with these additional “Social” gathering reduction measures.

The legislation does state this does not apply to sports fields or “Organized” sporting events that follow the mandated Return to Play, masking, and social distancing requirements. 

The key word in the statement is “Organized”.  For us that would cover anyone whose team is in a fall Pod and who has received their Insurance Addendum.

We on the female side of softball do not have residency rules and as such we had to factor that in.   Although the legislation is currently specific to those regions named Peel, Ottawa, and Toronto we have many players and coaches living within those 3 regions who play for teams outside those regions.

After lengthy discussion with ministry and attempting to advocate for continued play for all, knowing that further reductions will occur as numbers of Covid cases rise over the next few days, we have agreed to a plan for the time frame of today September 18, 2020 through to the 30th of September 2020.

For all teams in pods, regardless of their region, who have submitted their rosters and received their Insurance Addendums you will be permitted to play under the Organized activity of the PSO (P.W.S.A.).  Each team will be permitted 32 persons in attendance at a game, that includes players, coaches, spectators, and safety persons.  It does not include the 2 umpires. All persons in attendance must always wear face masks (exception examples: for hydration, injury situation).  

All other teams who have a valid outdoor facility permits will be allowed to practice, scrimmage, and play with a maximum of 25 persons inclusive of players, coaches, spectators, umpires, safety officers etc.  These teams will be restricted to 10 persons in an indoor training facility.  Currently Effective until September 30th, 2020.

Indoor, outdoor facilities cannot be combined.

The updated Mandatory Return to Play protocols document will remain in place until further notice.

Regards to fall/winter indoor training we have been advised that anyone planning on training indoors will need to submit their association’s plan which must meet the minimum standard of the P.W.S.A. Return to Play document, it must outline your plan i.e. which team will be where, when, and on what dates and for which specific time slots.  Include who will be in each of your cohorts with total numbers. The submission will require the return to open and/or safety protocols for the facility you will be using.  If using multiple facilities, then one for each will be required.  These will be submitted for approval prior to 3rd party insurance or PSO approval.    We have been advised you should not plan for indoor training at all in October as these processes will take time. 

We are being advised that due to the continuing pandemic to plan for a 2021 season with pods and/or cohorts although the hope is the allowable numbers for each pod will be 250 players and 250 spectators.  We will all need to look at these parameters when we plan 2021 tournament play.

 P.W.S.A. will not be permitted to issue any travel permits until at least January 2021.

We do appreciate that other organizations will be operating under different parameters, but our goal is continue to have softball allowed on the field and with the safety of all at the forefront and to protect all members inclusive of the coaches and associations from potential liability.

The health and safety of our Members has been, and will continue to be, our highest priority.

We thank everyone for their support during these challenging times.

Return to Play Protocols document

Pods

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