Covid-19 statement from the BSF

Mon 6 Apr 2020

Below is a statement on the Covid-19 epidemic and its effect on softball from British Softball Federation President Jenny Fromer:
 

Dear All,

While we apologise for the delay in the BSF issuing a statement on the Covid-19 epidemic, we also recognise that in the scheme of things it will have been much more critical for you to hear from government, Public Health England, public services, employers, mortgage lenders, landlords, schools etc than from a governing body of sport.

Like everyone else our primary concern is with everyone’s safety and well-being, and like everyone else we would of course reiterate that the most important information to follow and adhere to is that of the health authorities.

Within our community a number of organisations -- BaseballSoftballUK, BASU, Farnham Park, local leagues -- have already made decisions to cancel or postpone all events for the time being. In most cases they have specified that this is the position until 30 April. These are sensible decisions and we would not say anything to the contrary.

However, as everything is changing so quickly, it is highly likely that these time frames will be lengthened. We, along with everyone else, will be continually reviewing and updating our current position in accordance with government guidelines. The reality is that very little of what lies ahead is about the BSF making decisions, but instead will be about interpreting how government guidance should be applied to organised softball.

At present we are clear that no organised softball will go ahead at the national level until further notice. What can go ahead is the contingency planning for a partial playing season and/or no playing season at all. For a team sport, the social distancing directive in place makes this position fairly self-evident.

If we are able to safely return to play at the national level at some point this season, we will focus on prioritising as much meaningful play and competition as we can and will seek to remove as many barriers to participation as possible.

There will be lots of questions, both around the financial implications and around the playing situation, should a partial season be possible. The BSF has taken the decision that we will cease any further discretionary spending until further notice and will seek to make arrangements to defer non-discretionary payments where possible and to request refunds where these become due to us as international events are cancelled. We are doing this because the balance between our current cash position and our non-discretionary expenditure commitments is precarious in a situation where we will have little membership income this season or possibly none at all. One of our main priorities is to maintain the BSF as a solvent and functioning organisation.

We would advise any member organisations to not make further financial commitments at this time. But we should also recognise that our softball community and some related suppliers are all part of a connected ecosystem and that non-payment in some areas will have more impact than in others. We all need to weigh up individual decisions carefully and compassionately, and to trust each other to address these decisions reasonably when we reach the other side of where we are now.

Clearly, finding ways to remain physically active during this time is increasingly important in terms of both physical health and emotional well-being. Sport England has compiled some advice on how to stay active while maintaining self-isolation or social distancing, and these can be found at: https://www.sportengland.org/news/how-stay-active-while-youre-home.

For all of us, the priority right now is to stay safe and to help others to stay safe. The BSF will continue to meet remotely on a regular basis and will continue to share information from these discussions. If any of you have specific concerns or questions please contact us at info@britishsoftball.org.

Stay safe. Look after each other.

Jenny

Back to news listing


Comments

Commenting is not available in this channel entry.

BSF development grants available, apply