US Club Soccer CEO Kevin Payne: lifting of suspension ‘not a blanket permission to return’
US Club Soccer CEO Kevin Payne penned a letter to membership on Monday, providing an update on return-to-play guidelines.
Although the organization officially lifted its national suspension of all soccer activities on May 18, Payne emphasized in his message that it was “not a blanket permission to return to play,” as all member leagues and clubs are still expected to follow their local government guidelines.
Payne also outlined US Club Soccer’s insurance policy rules, and shared resources for returning to play safely, as the country begins to open up amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
See below for the full letter from Payne:
June 1, 2020
It’s been more than 70 days since the world changed in ways none of us has ever experienced before because of the novel coronavirus. It has been heartening to see the way our members all across the country have met this test with patience, responsibility and good will.
We find ourselves in a critical time, where our behavior now will determine the trajectory of this challenge for months to come. Life is opening up, but it’s very important that we are prudent as we return to the fields, so that we avoid a new spike which could set us back months.
Below are some reminders of our policies, and resources that can assist in your decision making, including links to new guidelines from U.S. Soccer and a useful set of protocols developed by ECNL.
We recognize that different parts of the country have been affected to varying degrees the impact of COVID-19. Therefore, effective May 18, US Club Soccer lifted its national suspension of activities and delegated return-to-play decision making to our members.
To be clear, this decision by no means is a blanket permission to return to play. For activities to be sanctioned with the normal US Club Soccer-provided insurance coverage in effect, members returning to play must be in compliance with the requirements established by the applicable local and state public health authorities. If members are not in compliance, the activities are unsanctioned and US Club Soccer-provided insurance coverage is not in effect.
Beyond the requirements, we also encourage you to follow optional guidelines or recommendations established by local and state public health authorities, as well as the return-to-play resources linked below, to the extent applicable and possible. Members are always expected to err on the side of caution in health and safety matters and at all times defer to local and state public health authorities.
- CDC’s directory of local, state and territorial health departments
- CDC’s COVID-19 Considerations for Youth Sports
- U.S. Soccer PLAY ON: Return-to-Play Guidelines (Phase 1 available now; additional guidelines are forthcoming)
- ECNL’s Recommendations for Returning to Play in a Training Environment
US Club Soccer’s web resources:
We encourage you to monitor usclubsoccer.org/coronavirus for helpful information related to our programming, employment resources, tips about the federal stimulus bill, CDC guidelines and safety requirements for virtual training sessions.
For insurance-related questions, please refer to the COVID-19 section of our Insurance web page.
Everyone deserves a safe place to enjoy the game we love. Please remain diligent in ensuring that players, parents, coaches and staff have that environment. Stay strong and stay safe.