Dear Provincial/County Secretaries,
Thursday, March 12th, 2020 at 12.30pm
Statement from Athletics Ireland regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19).
Athletics Ireland continues to closely monitor the coronavirus outbreak and the advice from the National Public Health Emergency Team and the HSE. The health and safety of the Athletics community is our priority and we are determined to be calm, calculated and proactive regarding precautions to limit the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
As announced by An Taoiseach this morning the following measures will come into effect from tomorrow morning until the 29th March, 2020.
- schools, colleges and childcare facilities will close from tomorrow (Friday)
- Indoor mass gatherings of 100 people or more and outdoor mass gatherings of more than 500 people should be cancelled
Where it is possible to work remotely people should do so. Public transport will continue and shops will continue to remain open. Mr Varadkar said we need the public and businesses to take a sensible approach.
Athletics Ireland is guided by this expert HSE advice and we will physically close our office from tomorrow morning but all staff will be operating our business from their homes. We are prepared to operate telephones and emails remotely to minimise disruption to our business.
Athletics Ireland is therefore instructing all affiliates to suspend all athletic competitions and events with immediate effect. We understand that this decision will result in inconvenience and disappointment to many athletes, coaches, officials, volunteers and supporters. However, we are sure that all will understand that this decision is taken in the best interests, not just of the athletics community, but of the Country.
Club training is down to the discretion of the individual club, but the recommendation from Athletics Ireland is that club training sessions be cancelled at this time.
The situation is changing rapidly and we will continue to monitor developments and update our website and communication on a daily basis.