Restart Grassroots Football
In case you missed it and with Boris’s road map due to be released on Monday this week we have been writing to our local MP’s and relevant ministers to try and encourage them to prioritise the restart of grassroots football, letting us play, with our risk controls of course. If you have a moment you could do the same and forward to your own local MP’s, well it can’t hurt. We also have submitted a petition, so we’re ready in case our football is not on the priority list, watch this space.
TO : Mr Oliver Dowden CBE Minister for Culture ([email protected])
Mr Nigel Huddleston MP Under Secretary of State for Sport ([email protected])
My Local – https://members.parliament.uk/FindYourMP
Mr Boris Johnson Prime Minister ([email protected])
- Give opening up of grass roots sport priority over non health focused industries
- 2nd request for evidence that outdoor sport participation that use Covid Control measures are greater than the benefits our outdoor sports deliver
Dear Mr Dowden, Mr Huddleston, Mr Johnson and Mr Local MP
We write to you now for a 3rd time during the pandemic. I represent many of our 2500 members of our national DADSvDADS.COM Football community. Our views also reflect those of millions of other outdoor sports participants.
In spite of all of the sports industries going through the required risk assessments and putting in place Covid control measures, our grassroots sports industry and for many people, our way of life, has for 9 of the past 12 months been discriminated against and stopped. The current government (rightly or wrongly) continues to positively discriminate, giving preference to protection of specific groups, (the vulnerable, elderly and the unhealthy as examples) while negatively discriminating against those trying hard to lead fit and healthy lives. Similarly this government continues to prioritise specific industries (takeaway restaurants, garden centres, vaping shops, pet walkers/hotels/groomers, trades people, professional sports, construction etc,etc as examples), over the sports industry. Surely now it has to be time for the grassroots sports industry, including grassroots team sports to have it’s period of priority in front of some of those industries and demographic groups? Is the irony lost on you that you have closed an industry and by doing so you increase the number of people that will be vulnerable to Covid and Covid like illnesses in the future? The industry has frustratingly accepted and supported the government’s position. But there has to be a point in time where enough is enough? Is 12 months not enough?
It worries us indeed that a lot of the current talk in government and in the papers is about the prioritization of opening pubs, restaurants and shops rather than getting our urgently needed outdoor sports going again to improve the fitness and mental well being of our children and adults alike. Is it OK that our sports has been stopped and they are being replacing by hours and hours of inactive time on game consoles and watching TV? Many will never return to a pitch, track or court. Is it OK that the group I represent, men 27’s to 50’s, find it illegal to play a sports that prevent a whole host of physical and mental health issues, including the development of serious Covid symptoms to keep other industries open?
We are still waiting for the evidence that our activities are of significantly higher risk than those industries that have been prioritised; fast food takeaway, off licences, garden centres, dog walkers, per hotels etc, etc, etc, etc so that we can understand your ongoing decision. Our DADS v DADS games governs our Covid rules well and there has never been transmission at our games.
May we ask that you please ensure that outdoor team sports and industry is included as a priority start up group as we come out of lock down. As sport industry suppliers, for years we have been fighting for our nation to be healthier, to be ready for these infections, with little government support or acknowledgment. The forgotten ‘front line’. It must now finally be time for this government to get behind this country’s sports industry before it is too late for the short, medium and long term health of our population.
DADS v DADS