Tomorrow’s Weather Forecast
COVID-19 and Where we stand as a Club. (New update soon)
STILL NO RACING.
Hello Club Execs and committee members,
I hope this message finds you and your members in good health, as well as your family and loved ones.
As of 12:01am this morning there was some easing of restrictions in NSW. We can now paddle in groups of up to 10, rather than the previous restriction of two. More about that shortly.
Paddle Australia and all the state paddle bodies have been working closely with government departments and sport peak bodies over past months, ensuring we are at the forefront of pandemic restrictions and how those restrictions affect our daily paddling activity. All clubs and all members would be receiving regular updates from PA, which will continue. I attend weekly teleconferences with NSW Office of Sport (including Minister for Sport Geoff Lee) and regular webinars with Sport NSW.
Restrictions will be gradually and carefully eased at different stages in different states. Here in NSW we have reached Level B (AIS Framework for Rebooting Sport in a COVID-19 Environment) this morning, which is a welcome milestone as the community continues to emerge from the bunkers.
What does that mean for us as paddlers? We can now paddle for health and fitness purposes in groups of up to 10, whilst still practicing social distancing guidelines. During Level A, PaddleNSW discouraged multi-person craft. Now in Level B it is permissible to paddle doubles provided the paddlers are from the same household. Please remember the same Public Health Orders apply in paddling, as they do in all other aspects of life. Don’t go hugging and embracing fellow club members in the group of 10. If you have flu-like symptoms, even the slightest, don’t paddle and don’t place your fellow club members at risk. Isolate at home until you recover. Our wonderful waterways will still be there when you are better.
What does Level A changing to Level B today mean for affiliated clubs? To be honest not a lot. We still can’t conduct races and competition. We still can’t host social functions. Please thoroughly read the recommendations from PA when you receive them.
The future? When do we reach Level C? When can we conduct local races again?
How long is a piece of string? If you had asked me the same question in March, my gut feel would have suggested September. Thankfully in Australia, sensible and rigid policy has not only flattened the curve, it has turned the curve on its head. We have all been affected by the restrictions and we have all been vigilant. Level C will approach sooner if the statistics continue to be favourable. I’m not the Prime Minister, nor the NSW Premier, nor the NSW Minister for Sport. I can’t forecast when we will be able to compete and when groups will expand to 100 or more.
What I can categorically say is that government heads will have more comfort in easing to Level C if their tracking measures are more robust. A very strong message from the Office of Sport is for all recreation users to download the COVIDSafe App. Paddle Australia and PaddleNSW strongly encourage our members to do precisely that, so that our government will feel more comfortable in the battle against the spread, and easing of restrictions will occur sooner rather than later. Please pass this particular message to all your members.
Planning PNSW state level events….
Quite a few of our affiliated clubs host PNSW events each year in the PNSW Harbour Series, the PNSW Marathon Series and the PNSW Sprint Series. As we all know, 2020 has been disruptive with all events March-onwards postponed. The respective PNSW Committees for Harbour Racing, Marathon and Sprint are currently looking at options if (I repeat if) restrictions are eased in July to allow resumption of racing. The original calendar of events may be altered with obviously less races to be potentially conducted. Factors to be considered include events for which we’ve already collected entry fees, and also we wouldn’t necessarily want remaining races to all be in the same area of the state (spread the love and spread the travelling). Please don’t inundate the office or the Committee volunteers with phone-calls. Rational decision-making will take place and all clubs will be notified ASAP, especially those requiring lead-up time for aquatic licences etc. Stay tuned….
As I close this message, I thank on behalf of the PNSW Board Directors, all our club committee members who have shown care and support to your local members. Times have been rough. Some people have lost jobs. One of the greatest things about our sport and being a club member is the mateship and the camaraderie. We genuinely care for each other. Please continue to reach out to your fellow members – whether it be through the club newsletter, Facebook or the occasional phone call. We are fortunate to have a fantastic paddling “family” and no-one should feel forgotten and alone, especially in these crazy times.
Please stay safe and paddle sensibly.
Chief Executive Officer
Paddle NSW Inc
(02) 8736 1254
You can now see results on Webscorer.