News and Announcements
We hope you (and your families) are all doing well and staying healthy and somewhat sane.
As you know, we cancelled the spring outdoor season (May/June) based on current restrictions and guidelines from provincial health authorities.
We had been holding out hope that there might be a possibility of a modified summer season (July/August), again based on provincial guidelines and restrictions.
Last week, the CLFHA team reps had our monthly board meeting, albeit virtually via Zoom (isn’t everyone on Zoom these days?), and made the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 outdoor season.
Calgary Recreation is beginning a soft reopening of fields beginning June 1, 2020, based on the current restrictions in place by the Alberta Government. However, there is one critical and very important RESTRICTION that will prevent us from having any outdoor league play this year :((
The City explicitly states that organized team sports are prohibited on sport fields. All league play, scrimmages and pickup games are prohibited. We do not know when these restrictions will be lifted, but it is extremely unlikely to be in time for the 2020 outdoor season to commence in any manner.
What is permitted by the City:
- Gatherings of up to 50 people in a group are allowed in an outdoor location, as long as 2-metre physical distancing remains in place and all other health orders and no common touch guidelines are followed. (Logistically speaking, it is nearly impossible to actually play field hockey with 2-metre distancing between players. As it was, we already had challenges with the 3m rule for indoor and 5m rule for outdoor when physical distancing wasn’t even a thing.)
- Maintaining a 2-metre distance between persons applies to all persons on or near the fields (including coaches, family and spectators).
- The maximum gathering number includes all persons on or near the fields (including coaches, family and spectators).
- Participants must not touch the same equipment or other device with their hands. (That includes the ball, goals/nets, and pylons/cones for field markings.)
- Appropriate measures must be taken to ensure no intentional or accidental physical contact occurs between participants.
- Washrooms and other amenities remain closed, until further notice.
- Guidance for outdoor recreation opportunities is posted on alberta.ca/biz-connect, and outdoor recreation groups and businesses should also refer to Workplace Guidance for Business Owners. In addition to government orders and guidelines, sport teams and individual players must also comply with the guidelines of their sport governing bodies.
Additionally, we also have the following update from Field Hockey Canada.
- FHC: http://www.fieldhockey.ca/2020/05/07/field-hockey-canada-return-to-play-concept-covid-19/
- As we all consider a safe return to play, there are some pressing considerations which begin to emerge. Our insurance company, Markel Canada Limited has taken the position not to provide coverage (NO COVERAGE) for COVID-19 related claims. This is regardless of the fact that the NSO or PSO has the contagion exclusion or not. To ensure there is no miscommunication, the insurance company is stating that “regardless of the organization having the Contagion Exclusion or not, Markel will not provide defense for COVID-19 related claims or lawsuits”.
- It means there exists considerable risk around any proposed return to play. (For us in YYC, league play is currently prohibited, as are scrimmages, but this is an important consideration for when we look at a phased back return to play.)
- As there is currently no legal precedent to consider within our risk assessment of this situation, we need to exercise caution in our decision-making regarding a safe return to play protocol. This has impact on us all as sport organizations – from board to field level.
The FIH has also released their guidelines for a safe return to hockey.
- FIH: http://fih.ch/news/safety-first-as-fih-helps-hockey-across-the-world-make-a-cautious-return-to-action/?fbclid=IwAR0Hzlc5TkMXORBS2_zN_H4JFGp6dl_fOLZa7OfroZeCLzl9gdPmL83p2P4#
We will continue to follow the guidance of local and provincial health authorities as well as following the phased approaches of FHBC, FHC and FIH for the measures that they are taking.
While we are extremely disappointed and saddened that we won’t be seeing all of your happy and sometimes sweaty faces on the pitch this summer, we hope that all of our collective efforts will enable everyone to stay healthy and eventually for us to have a safe and (more) worry-free return to normalcy and to field hockey.
Verla Wong | CLFHA League Coordinator |
Lisa Walpole | CLFHA President |
Some of you have made inquiries directly or through your Team Reps regarding the upcoming playoff matches planned for this weekend and the following two weeks with the COVID-19 concerns. We appreciate your patience so that we could assess the situation, have the necessary discussions, and make an informed and appropriate decision.
After those discussions and much thought, we have come to the difficult decision to cancel the remaining 3 weeks of the indoor season. We recognize that we are currently in playoffs so this was a very difficult decision to make. Out of an abundance of caution and very careful consideration, we feel that this is the most prudent decision at this time.
This is an unprecedented and exceptional situation and as a result of the cancellation of playoff matches, there will also be no challenge matches. Final results and standings will be as of the conclusion of the regular season.
While Calgary appears to be in the early stages of the Novel Coronavirus relative to other places in the world, at this time, we do not anticipate that there will be resolution over the next 3 weeks and we wanted to address concerns of players, umpires, and spectators and alleviate some anxiety over that time frame as the situation evolves.
We do not know what the short or long term future looks like and are continually assessing and reassessing. We will continue to monitor the situation and endeavour to provide updates regarding the upcoming outdoor season (planned to start the week of May 4th) to the best of our ability.
Please be safe and take necessary precautions to protect yourself and your families. In these unusual and challenging times, each of us need to remember to look out for one another and do our best to be kind, patient, supportive, and understanding (and to share some toilet paper if someone didn’t make it to Costco in time).
Resources for Reference:
- Centers for Disease Control – https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/about/index.html
- World Health Organization – https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus
- Health Canada – https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/coronavirus.html
Be well and thank you for your understanding.
Lisa Walpole | CLFHA President
Verla Wong | CLFHA League Coordinator
The document Coronaviruses-FAQ.pdf was attached to this post.
Field Hockey Alberta is in need of coaches for the Funstix program. If you are interested in coaching, please have a look at this link for further information and to register: http://fieldhockey.ab.ca/content/2020-spring-community-funstix---calgary
Thanks to everyone who has made use of the Fair Play Form already! The results gathered will aid us in improving the quality of our league and in recognizing the teams and umpires who contribute to positive experiences. Please keep the feedback coming! If you had a notable experience during a game, we want to hear from you.
Since the form does not yet have a convenient place on our website to call home, here is the link so you don’t need to dig through your emails: http://teampages.com/forms/20332-Fair-Play-Form
If you have feedback or comments about the form you’d like to share, please shoot us an email at email@example.com.
Field Hockey Alberta is looking for an Assistant to the Executive Director/Program Coordinator.
Interested? The job posting can be found here: https://ca.indeed.com/job/assistant-executive-directorprogram-coordinator-fc9d530abcdf763f