Dear Club Presidents and Delegates, the AFLVM Board met by Zoom Video Conference last night and unanimously voted to:
1. Cancel the COVID 19 impacted 2020 Season for all men’s and women’s Competitions
2. Confirm Affiliation Fees of 33% of previously advised 2020 fees
3. Continue to work with clubs to support the ongoing health, safety and mental well being of all our stakeholders.
Notwithstanding the unanimous vote of the Board, the decision to cancel the 2020 competitions was not taken lightly and was informed by:
1. Expert medical opinion from both within and outside the AFLVM
2. The feedback from Clubs to the survey of current intentions
3. AFL Victoria (and Victorian Government) particularly relating to insurance coverage, commencement dates and likely match day protocols.
The medical advice has been(and is) an overriding consideration given the health and safety of our stakeholders is paramount. The best current advice is that our age demographic is the most at risk of contracting the disease and close contact is the most likely source of infection. The Board felt that, notwithstanding protocols to minimise risks outside the boundary line contact is inevitable on the field.
The Clubs’ feedback was prima facie even between playing and cancelling, but a number of yes clubs were conditional. A full evaluation of the proposed protocols (when released) would likely prove problematic for a number of those clubs pushing them into the no camp.
AFL Victoria continues to negotiate with the Victorian Government to establish clear protocols, rules, policing and penalties and once these are finalised the Board will circulate to all clubs. AFLVM has sought clarity on insurance and legal liability and will share those responses with you when received. In the meantime it is worth noting that any practice matches not sanctioned by the league will not be covered by insurance whereas we understand intra-club matches will be.
The Board will continue to advise you of developments as they occur. We will prepare a Q&A of likely questions and seek to clarify the roles and responsibilities of clubs in light of the decision the Board has made.
Please note your discounted fee will be processed immediately with normal payment terms. Clubs that have paid in full will receive a 67% refund. Clubs under hardship are encouraged to contact the Treasurer through Chris Spencer.
The Board is committed to work with clubs to develop ideas and initiatives to allow clubs to maintain contact with members (subject to Government protocols) that facilitates ongoing social interaction and supports health and well being and look forward to further discussions.
The Board will release a more detailed statement underpinning its decisions including approved protocols. In the meantime please direct any questions or comments to Chris Spencer and please stay well.