Return to Play Guidelines

Football Alberta’s Restrictions Regarding COVID-19 Mitigation this Fall

As of September 15, 2021 there are new Health Orders from the Provincial Government regarding the COVID-19 Pandemic. For football we will still continue as business as usual with the following additional restrictions:

· Most municipalities and/or school boards will already have requirements for masks on bussing or any other type of enclosed group transportation. Whenever you travel as a team in those situations, masks MUST be worn.  Any carpooling by players or officials is discouraged but masks must be worn if the occupants of the car come from different households.

· Facilities in different areas of the Province may have different rules regarding access so it's important to communicate with them prior to games.  In some cases the locker rooms may not be available anymore so it is wise to check in advance. In the cases where the locker rooms are accessible for both teams and officials they should be used as an absolute last resort (i.e. long bus ride requiring teams to change prior to games) and masks are mandatory in all indoor situations.  Whenever possible teams and officials should come dressed and not access any indoor spaces before, during, or after competitions or practices.  

· All coaches using spotters booths and/or minor officials such as timers, statisticians, and public address announcers must wear masks if they are in an enclosed space with more than one person in the room. 

· All teams meetings should be conducted on-line (i.e. Zoom) whenever possible.

· All outdoor activity will not be subject to mask wearing but Physical Distancing should be practiced where possible. This may require larger spaces on the sideline for benches during games and increased usage of the field for practices. 

· Spectators are still allowed at games but required to Physically Distance from other family units at the games.  In situations where capacity of a facility is reduced for spectators please cooperate with the facility provider to ensure your team's supporters do not exceed what is available.

· Now that the season is well underway we would recommend an alternative to post game handshakes be used. Whatever recognition of the other team in the spirit of sportsmanship that can be used would be eminently preferable to shaking 50 peoples hands.  Waves, elbow bumps, three cheers, are suggestions you may consider.

· Pre-screening apps that have the player indicate how they are feeling on any particular day are in use with several teams and are recommended going forward. If nothing else, it can ensure that anyone not feeling well declares as such and does not return to a practice or game until they feel better. Please be vigilant in that anyone who is not feeling well at all MUST stay home until they feel better or in some situations where they report COVID symptoms - provide a negative test at their own expense.

· Any positive COVID cases reported on your team or within an official's organization will be dealt with by the AHS contact who informs the individual in question.  Schools will have their own protocols but all community groups and officials should abide by what they are told by AHS regarding any individual on their team with a positive test (i.e. isolation requirements).  There is no longer any contact tracing being done by the Province but do keep your contact list for your team current in case you need to inform team members who have been a close contact to a positive case.

· Sanitizing all communal equipment (i.e. blocking dummies and footballs) at the conclusion of each practice or game is still recommended.


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