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UFCTT denies ‘leading role’ in coaches march against restrictions, working on ‘Back to Play’ policy

“[…] The UFCTT is in the process of reaching out to other sporting disciplines to come together to develop a ‘Back to Play’ policy. The document will be sent to the Ministry of Sport who, with the guidance of the Ministry of Health, can fine-tune and make available to the public. 

“This will serve as a blueprint for associations, clubs, players, coaches, parents etc, to ensure that participation in sports can be safe as possible…”

The following is a press statement from Unified Football Coaches of Trinidad and Tobago (UFCTT) interim president Jefferson George:

Photo: Cunupia FC coach Michael De Four (left) talks to the media during their march against Covid-19 restrictions in sport on 11 November 2021.

The UFCTT would like to correct an article published on 9/11/21 in the Trinidad Guardian. The article, which states that the interim president of the UFCTT Jefferson George is one of the leaders in a protest by the ‘concerned citizens of football’, is incorrect.

While the UFCTT agrees and empathises with the concerned coaches, it [did] not play a leading role in the action planned for Thursday. The UFCTT supports any legal means of expression which serves the interests of the football fraternity and we believe that his is worthy of support.

The UFCTT is in the process of reaching out to other sporting disciplines to come together to develop a ‘Back to Play’ policy. The document will be sent to the Ministry of Sport who, with the guidance of the Ministry of Health, can fine-tune and make available to the public. 

This will serve as a blueprint for associations, clubs, players, coaches, parents etc, to ensure that participation in sports can be safe as possible.

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago Women’s National Senior Team interim head coach Kenwyne Jones (second from right) has a word with substitute Chelcy Ralph (far right) during friendly international action against Panama at the Ato Boldon Stadium on 21 October 2021.
Although national teams are allowed to operate, domestic football remains outlawed.
(via TTFA Media)

The recent denial of the Ascension proposal is evidence that we need to have a united strategy to encourage the Ministry of Sport to act in the interest of sport. 

All industries are lobbying to get back to capacity while sport is frozen in time. It is necessary for the Ministry of Sport to develop the following:

  1. Timeline for return to sports.
  2. Sports specific protocols for play.
  3. Mitigation models for competitive sports.

The UFCTT remains aware of the very real health crisis that exists and is by no means advocating for caution to be thrown to the wind. However, with credible studies showing that Covid-19 is becoming endemic, we have to make preparations for living with this disease.

This will call on our leaders to be thoughtful and adaptable.

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