Category: COVID-19

COVID-19 Restrictions Update (Island of Ireland)

Island of Ireland Restrictions

In accordance with the restrictions as set out by the Northern Ireland Executive and the decision of the Irish Government to move the Republic of Ireland to Level 5, all Softball activities inclusive of training is suspended for a period of six weeks from Thursday October 22, 2020.

Please note that during this period no softball activities are covered by the Softball Ireland insurance policy. Please note that the suspension of activities inludes but is not limited to leagues, tournament, inter-team games, practices and training in any sized grouping.

Softball Ireland woud encourage our members to follow all public health guidelines and continue to work together to reduce the spread of the virus.

The Board wishes continued good health to all our members and their families.

COVID-19 Restrictions Update (Dublin County – Level 3)

Further to the announcement of the Government (Irish Republic), Dublin County has been moved to Level 3 under the framework for Restrictive Measures.

What does this mean for Softball in Dublin?

With effect from September 19, 2020, to such time as the Government changes the Level applied to Dublin County, no softball matches/friendlies/pick-up games may be played in the County of Dublin. Please note, should any Club arrange/play a match/friendy/pick-up game during this period the participating teams will not be insured.

Can our Club still practice in Dublin?

Level 3 permits for non contact training only in pods of up to 15 for this period. For softball, the Medical Committee has defined a Club as a Pod.

With effect from September 19, 2020 to such time as the Government changes the Level applied to Dublin County, Dublin based Clubs may host outdoor practice to a maximum of 15 attendees who must be Club members only (non-club members may not be invited to practice sessions). All practices must be conducted in accordance with the Softball Ireland Return to Play Protocol.

What about Clubs outside of Dublin County?

For all other Clubs (Irish Republic) outside the County of Dublin, matches and training may be held in accordance with the current Government advice and Softball Ireland Return to Play Protocol.

For Clubs based in Northern Ireland, Softball is permitted if the conditions set out by the Northern Ireland Executive are met

We would ask all our memebers to continue to follow the Softball Ireland Return to Play Protocol and respect the restrictions put in place by the respective Governments.

All the latest information for Softball Ireland’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and return to play are available here.

Softball Leinster Return to Play Confirmed

The Softball Ireland Medical Committee has confirmed that Softball Leinster teams may return to training with effect from August 23, 2020 in groups of no more than 15 in accordance with the recently released government guidelines.

The Softball Leinster League will return on August 24, 2020 and teams are encouraged to review the Softball Ireland Return To Play Protocol which is available here. All training and games must be held in compliance with the Softball Ireland protocol.

Spectators

In accordance with the Government Guidelines, spectators are not permitted to attend games or training sessions before September 13, 2020 (this restriction includes player family members or non-rostered players).

Softball Ireland will issue updated guidelines and processes should a player receive a positive test within the next 24 hours.

Statement from Hippetys Softball Club

Please see the below statement issued on behalf of the Hippetys Softball Club

Just a quick note to let everyone know that the player who contracted COVID-19 is doing well and showing no symptoms. The player’s family is also doing well. We would like to thank all the teams and players for taking this news with grace and respect.

The Club would like to assure Softball Ireland members that the contact with COVID-19 does not seem to have come from playing softball or softball related activities. The player, who showed no symptoms, was exposed to suspected contact through work. Everyone at their workplace was tested after COVID-19 emerged there. The player was involved in that testing and tested positive for COVID-19. 

On confirmation of a positive result, the club immediately alerted Softball Ireland (S.I.) who took action and responded with a plan within a few hours at which point all players were informed. We would like to thank S.I. for their help with a very difficult situation.

In regard to rumours and speculation, we were contacted about pictures of players, in a pub, on Facebook. This was done in relation to players not social distancing at a social gathering of softball players. We feel this is unfair to both softball clubs involved as well as the player. While we will never know definitively how the COVID-19 was contracted but as mentioned before it seems highly unlikely that softball or softball related social activities contributed to the positive COVID-19 test.

In relation to the player’s request for anonymity, we realize that some players and teams will know who the player who contracted COVID-19 is. Please keep this information to yourself and if you are asked any questions about COVID-19 or the player, please direct all questions to your COVID-19 officer or Softball Ireland.


Finally, we would also like to thank all the teams and players who sent well wishes and messages of support.

Suspension of Softball Activities in Leinster

Softball Ireland have been advised this afternoon of a positive COVID-19 test from a player who played in the Hippies v Dodder Premier Division game on August 4, 2020.

The Softball Ireland Medical Committee were notified of the positive case and the Committee have considered the impact of the positive result noting in particular player movement within the Softball Leinster League during the 2020 season. 

The Softball Ireland Board recognise the efforts taken by all teams to ensure a safe playing environment for all participants to date and urge clubs to continue following the Protocols available on www.softball.ie. 

The Board, having noted the recommendation of the Medical Committee, this evening AGREED that:

  • Players from Dodder Softball Club and Hippetys Softball Club cannot participate in any Softball Activities for 14 days with immediate effect.
  • Softball activities in Softball Leinster inclusive of practice are postponed from 0700 Saturday August 15, 2020 through 0700 August 23, 2020. 
  • Softball activities in Galway inclusive of practice are postponed from 0700 Saturday August 15, 2020 through 0700 August 23, 2020.

All players are reminded to follow the HSE guidance with regards to COVID-19 and monitor for symptoms. If you concerned that you may require a test, please follow the HSE process detailed on the following link: https://www2.hse.ie/conditions/coronavirus/testing/how-to-get-tested.html

The Softball Ireland Board appreciate the ongoing support of the Softball Leinster Committee and the impacted teams at this time.

Softball Ireland Face Masks on Sale

Further to the introduction of mandatory facemasks by the Irish government, Softball Ireland are looking to produce Softball Ireland branded masks to both promote OUR sport and keep members safe during these unprecedented times.

The bottle green mask with the softball Ireland logo has an adjustable fitting and is machine washable.

Protection

The mask includes:

  • High strength woven fabric
  • Inserted surgical wrap filter
  • Sterille Barrier System *EN-ISO 11607
  • Barrier against micro-organisms
  • Two inner layers of microfibres that avoid the penetration of particles and fluids
  • Made in Ireland

Cost

Masks may be purchased individually or in bulk for the following prices:

Individual Mask – €9 per mask

Team Mask Purchases (orders of 10+ mask) – €8.50 per mask

If you wish to order face masks, please complete the order form using the below link:

Order Form: https://forms.gle/y4U1U2BQtAY5rYHm9

To produce the mask our supplier will need a minimum order of 100 masks, once orders have been received, we will keep those who have placed orders updated on the status.

Let’s both promote our sport and stay safe!

Updated Player Restrictions

August 7, 2020

Further to the announcement of revised Government advice on August 7, 2020, any Softball Ireland members who reside in Kildare, Laois or Offaly, are not permitted to attend any Softball Ireland activities until such time as the Government advice is updated.

If a member has visited any of these three counties in the last 14 days or visits (other than commuting through) the three counties during the time of the Government restrictions and experiences any symptoms related to COVID-19, they are advised not to attend Softball Ireland sanctioned activities.

Thank you for you co-operation and support during these quickly changing times.

Home plate with a bat, balls and helmet.

COVID-19 Symptom Screening & Contact Tracing

Effective July 20, 2020

Softball Ireland have announced the launch of its COVID-19 Symptom Screening and Contact Tracking Web-App.

In accordance with government requirements Softball is required to maintain records of all attendees at Softball training and games. Additionally, it is the recommendation of Sport Ireland that all participants certify they are not experiencing symptoms prior to training/playing.

Softball Ireland have partnered with Redicare for the use of a a GDPR compliant and secure COVID-19 online survey which will both provide a Play/No Play advice to participants and the required contact tracing functionality.

All members of Softball Ireland wishing to play softball with effect from July 20, 2020 are required to register and complete the Web App questionnaire in advance of each training/game. The questionnaire should be completed as close to the event time possible but no earlier than 6 hours in advance.

Team/Club COVID-19 Officers will be provided with team admin access in-order to use the Web App to track attendance at training and games.

For further questions on the Web-App kindly email president@softball.ie

Home plate with a bat, balls and helmet.

Return to Play Protocol

Softball Ireland are pleased to publish their Return to Play Protocol. The Protocol aims to help clubs and players return to the game of softball during the COVID-19 pandemic. Information will be updated as required on the ‘Latest COVID-19 Information‘ area of the website.

Please note that the Return to Play Protocol is a living document, and will updated as and when government advice changes. Please pay careful attention to the version number and date of publication.

Return to Play Protocol v1.0 (Published 26th June 2020)

Return to Play Announcement

The Softball Ireland Board having noted the recommendation of the Medical Committee have confirmed that clubs based in the Republic of Ireland may return to training with effect from July 4, 2020 and return to games from July 20, 2020 subject to meeting criteria.

The Return to Play protocol and requirements together with registration details and an update on insurance will be published on the Softball Ireland Website by no later than June 26, 2020.

Softball Ireland are delighted to be in a position to announce and confirm the return to play dates and see people back on the field of play, however, please note that the Softball Ireland insurance policy (and in particular the Public Liability part of the policy) remains suspended until July 4, 2020. Should any player or small group of players participate in any Softball activities prior to July 4, 2020 they do so at their own risk and are fully liable for any injuries / damage to other participants, third party bystanders or property.

An infield softball.

Return to Play Update

Softball Ireland note the announcement from the Irish government today that all sporting activity in the Republic of Ireland can resume from 29 June, the format of which is at the discretion of the National Governing Body. The Softball Ireland Medical Committee will meet in the coming days to assess today’s government decision and provide further recommendations to the Board about the possible acceleration of the Return to Play Date.

Softball Ireland wish to remind teams and players of the following:

– The suspension of all formal team/club organised Softball activites (incliuding training) on the island of Ireland remains in place until July 20, 2020.  This must be strictly adhered to.

– The Softball Ireland insurance policy (and in particular the Public Liability part of the policy) remains suspended until July 20, 2020. Should any player or small group of players participate in any Softball activities prior to July 20, 2020they do so at their own risk and are fully liable for any injuries / damage to other participants, third party bystanders or prorperty.   

Please do not hesitate to contact Colum Lavery should you have any questions on the matter.

Return To Play Timelines and Update

It is a pleasure to write to the Softball Ireland membership in the knowledge that we will be returning to play in a few short weeks. Since the difficult announcement to suspend all Softball in Ireland on March 12, 2020, the Softball Ireland Medical Committee and Board have worked constantly to develop a pathway and ultimately a protocol to allow those who wish to play softball in 2020 to do so in a safe environment and in-line with health and governmental advice.

Softball Ireland are pleased to confirm that the Return to Play Protocol which has been developed by the Medical Committee is working its way through the consultation stage. Subject to no major issues or changes in public health advice, it is anticipated that the protocol together with the approved 2020 rule variations will be issued to all Regions, Clubs and Players on June 25, 2020 with a Return to Play date scheduled for July 20, 2020.

On behalf of the Board and the Medical Committee, I wish to re-emphasise the following very important points:

  • The suspension of all formal team/club organised Softball activites (incliuding training) on the island of Ireland remains in place until July 20, 2020.
  • The Softball Ireland insurance policy (and in particular the Public Liability part of the policy) remains suspended until July 20, 2020. Should any player or small group of players participate in any Softball activities prior to July 20, 2020 they do so at their own risk and are fully liable for any injuries / damage to other participants, third party bystanders or prorperty.   

So much has happended in Ireland and across the world in the last number of months and our thoughts are with any of our members impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Softball Ireland would like to thank our members who have worked on the front line in essential roles to keep us safe and our economy going.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions on the above email or process.

Softball Ireland Return to Play Timeline