A government press release issued on Wednesday should help ease worries of minor sports associations that have COVID-19 liability and insurance concerns.
The release is published below.
In recent months, representatives from the Kamloops Minor Hockey Association, Kamloops Minor Baseball Association and Kamloops Youth Soccer Assocation have expressed concern to KTW over insurance policies that contain pandemic-related exlclusions.
VICTORIA — British Columbians will be able to get back to playing sports sooner with the province’s action to protect amateur sport organizations from COVID-19 liabilities, provided they are complying with public health orders and provincial sport guidelines.
Government has created a ministerial order that aims to protect amateur sport organizations, their employees and volunteers from liability.
“We want to make sure children and their families can get the benefits of physical activity and get back to playing the sports they love,” Lisa Beare, minister of tourism, arts and culture, said in the press release.
“Many sports organizations are run by volunteers who need to make sure they are protected for risks related to COVID-19. This order will help cover that risk so people can safely get back to playing sports sooner in their communities.”
Provincial and local sport organizations have identified challenges with obtaining adequate insurance as a result of the pandemic.
Most insurance companies are not providing coverage for COVID-19 related damages, meaning many amateur sports were unable to provide sport programming during the pandemic.
The ministerial order protects amateur sport organizations and their representatives from damages resulting, directly or indirectly, from COVID-19 for amateur sports. For example, a sports organization or its representatives will not be liable for a participant in their sports program being exposed to COVID-19 as a result of participation.
That liability protection would be in place as long as they follow applicable guidance, such as viaSport’s return-to-sport protocols and public-health guidance on how to prevent the spread of the virus.
This guidance includes encouraging proper handwashing, regular disinfecting, limiting shared equipment, physical distancing measures and the use of wellness questionnaires and health self-assessment tools.
To view the ministerial order, click here.