Parents or guardians can attend matches under new Covid-19 restrictions

One parent or guardian per child will be permitted to attend a sporting event such as a game or training session under new Covid-19 restrictions should they consider it necessary, Sport Ireland has confirmed.

Clarity has been issued on the new Government guidelines introduced to manage the spread of Covid-19 by Sport Ireland this evening in a guidance note to the sport sector, as all sporting events are now set to be held behind closed doors with no spectators.

It has been confirmed that parents or guardians attending a sporting event in a “safeguarding” or “supervisory” capacity will not be classified as spectators, although strict social distancing and public health guidelines should be adhered to at all times.

The provisions will be subject to “strict protocols” set to be issued in the coming days, according to Sport Ireland.

Welfare

The guidance comes as the GAA moved to clarify aspects of the new restrictions yesterday, suggesting that one parent or guardian may be allowed attend juvenile matches “where they consider it necessary for the welfare of their own child”.

The Football Association of Ireland has said it welcomes this evening’s clarification that a player below the age of 18 may be accompanied to a football match or training session by one parent or guardian.

The organisation said it has been in talks with government agencies on the new guidelines for sport since they were announced on Tuesday and will publish an updated “Safer Return to Play and Safer Return to Training Protocols” on Friday.

In the Sport Ireland guidance note, a “behind closed doors” sporting event is understood to include “any individual involved in the participation, running, delivery, and broadcasting of the event”, with the limitation of gatherings to six people indoors and 15 people outdoors not applying to competitions, events or tournaments.

The notes says that national governing bodies of sport and clubs with events planned up to September 13th “should go ahead as planned with strict public health measures and protocols in place”, with no spectators permitted to attend.

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