Saturday 12th September was the first day I was able to grab my kit and get back on the side lines photographing the 2019/2020 cup finals for the Young Elizabethan league since March.
The Football Association have put multiple guidelines in place to ensure the safety of the players and supporters against coronavirus.
If you are partaking in any grass roots football please take a read and abide by the Football Associations risk assessment below.
1. ARRANGEMENTS REQUIRED TO MAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCING
• If the venue is open to the public, consider how this will be managed in relation to the Club activity to maintain social distancing
• Signage to direct the flow of people to assist social distancing
• Ground markings to remind people of social distancing
• Reduce congestion at entrances and exits
• Access to and from toilet facilities
• One-way systems in/out
• Consider how parking arrangements will be affected.
• Clubs should ensure that they provide accessible facilities and comply with health and safety legislation
• Ensure access is still provided to accessible toilets, accessible parking bays and accessible access into facilities
• Changes to toilet facilities, their location and accessibility including access to hand-washing facilities. Consider the possibility that individuals may not be able to access a toilet to wash their hands and what alternative access to clean water could be put in place
• Ensure participants arrive changed and ready to exercise and leave immediately after the activity.
3. PROMOTE GOOD HYGIENE AND REGULARLY CLEAN FACILITIES
• Facilities and equipment must be kept clean – if the club has its own venue, ensure regular daily cleaning of the facilities. In particular, identify high contact touch points for which should be cleaned on multiple times across the day more regular cleaning (e.g. door handles, grab rails and vending machines). Follow the Public Health England guidance here for cleaning in non-healthcare settings and if a Covid-19 case is reported at the facility
• Direct people to where they can wash their hands.
• Provide signage to remind people of the importance of washing their hands thoroughly
• Players should be informed that spitting should be avoided, as the main mode of transmission of the virus is in respiratory secretions. In addition, clubs should consider enforcing a complete ban on chewing gum, as it is either spat out or rolled into a ball and taken out and thus poses a high risk of cross contamination. Club officials may wish to put a disciplinary measure in place in relation to spitting and chewing gum
• Ensure participants bring their own named hand sanitiser for when soap and water is not available (use alcohol-based hand sanitiser.)
• Provide paper towels for drying hands and sealed bins for placing paper towels and tissues in. If there is any concern that someone may have had symptoms of, or been infected with Covid-19, ensure these are double-bagged in line with Government guidance.
• If hiring a facility, ask for details on how the facilities are compliant with the Government’s guidance and ensure club officials are familiar with the procedures that should be followed.
4. TRAVELLING TO AND FROM THE VENUE
• Encourage socially-distant forms of transport (e.g. cycling and walking). All other forms of transport should be considered before public transport.
• Government guidance should be followed at all times.
• Adults and children should only travel with a member of their household or someone within their ‘support bubble’. Please note that separated parents, living in different households and those in ‘support bubbles’ announced by Government on 10 June 2020, can also car share.
5. PARENTS ATTENDING
• Discuss with club officials and parents the options of how best to manage social distancing amongst parents who bring their children to the activity, e.g. staying in their own cars, or in separate social distancing ‘gatherings’ of up to six people.