A group of leading sport-oriented non-governmental organisation (NGOs) have joined with the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) to launch a campaign calling for independently-assessed health and safety practices at sports venues.
Sport and Sustainability International (SandSI), Green Sports Alliance (GSA), Sports Environment Alliance (SEA), Golf Environment Organisation and EcoAthletes are among those working with IWBI to promote the importance of independent assessments to be introduced in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Together they are encouraging all sporting federations, leagues, venues and teams to enhance their venues’ health and safety protocols and assure that protocols are assessed by “a credible third party” that focuses on health and facility operations.
Dr Allen Hershkowitz, Chair of SandSI’s board and environmental science advisor to the New York Yankees of Major League Baseball, commented “addressing the pandemic from a global perspective is of the utmost importance.
“We need a coordinated global effort to give fans confidence that their favourite teams and venues are taking every precaution so they can feel confident returning to the stadiums and arenas.”
IWBI President and Chief Executive, Rachel Hodgdon, noted “we know that there are myriad league and organizational protocols that have been established and a patchwork of varying municipal, regional and national guidelines that have been laid out.
“But our customers needed something that could help them communicate clearly and succinctly that the health and well-being of their employees, guests and community stakeholders were the top priority and specific strategies were being implemented, built on the available science.”
During the campaign, the partners will promote the WELL Health-Safety Rating as a possible solution.
The protocol was developed in response to acute health threats, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, and focuses on operational policies, maintenance protocols, emergency plans and stakeholder engagement.
It was designed to help organisations to prioritise the health of their staff, visitors and stakeholders and more than 30 sports and entertainment venues have enrolled in or achieved the rating since September 2020.
Green Sports Alliance Executive Director, Roger McClendon added “the number one priority of sports teams, leagues, and venues is to get fans back in the stands safely.
“Helping ensure the health and wellness of employees, players, and fans within arenas and stadiums so they can confidently experience the thrill of live sports together continues to be a major focus for the Green Sports Alliance.
“IWBI and the WELL Health-Safety Rating are valuable resources to ensure that Green Sports Alliance members have the expert science, knowledge, tools and procedures to help provide a safer environment for everyone.”
Image shows Quayclean staff at Melbourne’s Marvel Stadium.
16th February 2021 – Global Sports Week focusses on challenges facing world sport
1st October 2020 – Global sports survey shows impact of COVID-19 pandemic
30th April 2020 – ASM Global to launch environmental hygiene program
19th March 2020 – Green Sports Alliance advocates for sport and sustainability
21st January 2019 – Sports Environment Alliance looks to improve facilities’ sustainability
13th November 2017 – Sport sustainability issues to be discussed at Melbourne SEA Summit
10th November 2016 – MCG environmental efforts recognised at sport sustainability awards
19th July 2015 – HOK announces partnership with Green Sports Alliance
1st February 2015 – Report suggests elite and grassroots sport at risk from climate change
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