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BAFA update from Chief Executive Pete Ackerley on COVID-19 (19 March)

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Update from the BAFA board on suspension of British American football

Firstly, I would like to thank everyone in the British American football community for your patience and understanding during this unique and challenging time. I would also like to thank you for your great efforts in implementing the changes that have been required over the past few days. 

My immediate priority remains focussed on the wellbeing of BAFA members and your friends and families, and I hope you are all able to remain safe.

As you know, last week we suspended all American football-related activity, including practices, training camps and friendly matches across all formats.

I met with the BAFA board earlier today to discuss what happens next and our contingency planning. I want to share with you the updates following this meeting.

Update on suspension of American football-related activity
Clearly the situation with COVID-19 continues to change and evolve rapidly, so we will keep all of our plans under daily review and in line with the latest advice from the Government.

We will aim to give notice on an anticipated start date for the season as early as possible, so that clubs can prepare accordingly. As it stands, British American football-related activity will be suspended until at least 12 April 2020. This decision has been taken in the best interests of players, coaches, referees, volunteers, supporters and the wider British American football community.

We are currently speaking to our key partners and stakeholders and working through a number of different scenarios in terms of how the various competitions could be adjusted to accommodate changes in schedule.

In addition, we are undertaking discussions across our game around the financial implications of the current situation and the impact it may have on British American football.

I appreciate the suspension presents challenges and uncertainty for players and clubs, and I would ask for you continued understanding as we navigate this unprecedented scenario. Your support is invaluable and please rest assured that all decisions are being taken with member safety and the integrity and sustainability of our game at front of mind.

Let’s continue to stick together as a sport, and I urge you to closely follow the important advice we are being given from the Government around reducing social interaction between people and preventing the spread of COVID-19 through handwashing and respiratory hygiene. I will update you as soon as there is further news.

Pete Ackerley, BAFA Chief Executive


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