The following is a Return to Sport Update regarding changes to the Victorian Government’s Open Premises (OPDs) and Mandatory Vaccination Directions relating to individuals aged between 12 years and 2-months to 15 years old.
With Victoria reaching 90 per cent double dose (12 plus) vaccination rate, the Victorian Government recently announced a further easing of restrictions for Phase D of the Roadmap: Delivering the National Plan.
The previous policy for Vaccination Requirements – Basketball Victoria Operated Leagues, Events and Activities has now been updated to be consistent with the above directions requiring individuals aged over 12 years and-2-months who attend any Basketball Victoria Operated Leagues, Events and Activities to be fully vaccinated.
This does not apply to ‘domestic or local basketball competitions’ who have the community sport exemption available, subject to the venue user policy. As per the Open Premises Directions, the venue operator or organisation still has discretion to choose to apply vaccination requirements if they wish (the exemption can be applied at a physical recreation premises if that space is being operated only for the purpose of conducting a community sport activity.) If there is a mix of other physical recreation activities or no clear seperate entry and exit point for community sport then the exemption does not apply.
In an effort to maintain operational consistency for our operated leagues (VJBL and CBL as well as training or try-outs for NBL1 South and Big V), events, tournaments, programs, camps or clinics across all venues and to encourage a safe environment, Basketball Victoria require all individuals aged over 12-and-2-months to be fully vaccinated (unless medically exempt) to participate. This includes players, coaches, technical officials, spectators, volunteers or staff attending a venue for these events.
To fairly and responsibly run the Victorian Junior Basketball League (VJBL), due to the number of venues that have vaccination requirements in place, we need to maintain consistency across the league and apply the stricter of the policies. As an example – we can’t have a situation where an unvaccinated player turns up to one venue one week and is able to play and then when they try to play at a different venue and are unable to enter the following week.
An audit of the 79 venues used for VJBL showed 167 courts of a possible 252 courts (66%) had vaccination mandates from the venue operators, meaning that having a consistent approach to VJBL operations is important. With venues updating their vaccination policies to include individuals over 12 yrs and 2 months, Basketball Victoria had to implement the same policy for our operated leagues, events and activities.
We understand the challenges involved with vaccination requirements for 12-15 year olds at short notice. We’ve been waiting to see community sport return to the courts after two COVID-19 affected years – there’s nothing we want to see more than children returning to the court and enjoying their basketball with their friends.
The Government’s policies, which were to encourage participation, have had unintended consequences on the sport of basketball due to the requirement for indoor venue operators to take into consideration multiple factors across their stadiums.
For the sake of venue operators, associations and families, Basketball Victoria thinks it’s in the best interest of the community to have advance notice of a reasonable cut-off date for 12.2 to 15 year old’s to be vaccinated. We are working closely with Sport and Recreation Victoria to try to influence the Department of Health and ease the confusion around this rule in the short term. We will keep advocating for those affected 12–15-year-old players and hope to see some short-term leniency for these children to be fully vaccinated.
Each venue where a Basketball Victoria operated activity is held is required to have a COVID Check-In Marshal to assist with venue entry. Every patron (12-and-2-months or older) will be required to check in via the venue QR Code and their smart-phone and will need to show their green tick via the Services Victoria App.
Our current Return to Sport Guidelines are available to download via the button at the end of this page.
For information about Victorian COVIDSafe settings as they impact community sport, physical recreation and vaccination status visit the Coronavirus Victoria website.
As per the Victorian Government – Open Premises Directions for community sport:
Spectators and participants, including players, coaches and volunteers, of community sport can access both indoor and outdoor spaces within a physical recreation facility without showing vaccination status only if:
- The space is being operated only for the purpose of conducting a community sport activity;
- Only participants who are necessary to facilitate the community sporting activity, such as participants, workers, and volunteers, are present
Where community sport is being conducted in a physical recreation facility, venue staff (including volunteers) must be fully vaccinated if their job extends beyond community sport.
RETURN TO SPORT REACTIVATION LEVEL – MONDAY 22 NOVEMBER
METROPOLITAN MELBOURNE AND REGIONAL VICTORIA
GREEN COVID-SAFE (INDOOR COMPETITION AND TRAINING)
It’s important that your business is COVIDSafe and follows the COVIDSafe principles.
You and your workers/volunteers must wear a face mask indoors, and it is highly recommended that face masks are worn outdoors where physical distancing cannot be maintained– unless you have a lawful exception. This includes people who are fully vaccinated. The Coronavirus website has information specific to each sector and industry to help you adhere to COVIDSafe practices.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS – ANSWERS VERIFIED BY SPORT AND RECREATION VICTORIA
Does a venue have the right to refuse entry to someone who cannot or will not show proof of vaccination? What legal protections are in place for such venues?
Yes. All patrons and visitors that visit participating businesses and organisations must prove their vaccination or exemption status to enter a venue. Venues and facilities are able to set their own terms of entry conditions or rules (including vaccination requirements) according to management decisions.
People working at venues that are open for fully vaccinated people are required to check your vaccination status, which they will usually do on entry to the venue through the Service Victoria app.
If you are not fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and have been refused entry to a venue for this reason, please be aware that these workers are doing their job and following the laws in place in Victoria to keep you and others safe.
Atwhatplaces am I legally obliged to show proof of vaccination?
The coronavirus website has the most up-to-date information about where you need to show proof of vaccination.
CanIreporta venue if it does not follow the correct check-in procedure? How do I do this?
Community members can raise concerns about compliance with directions through the Police Assistance Line (PAL) on 131 444. Press #3 to report a confirmed breach of government-mandated COVID-19 restrictions.
Workers can raise concerns via WorkSafe on 1800 136 089.
Employers can talk to their industry regulator or peak body for specific industry-related support. A COVID-19 Outbreak Joint Intelligence Unit has been established to support comprehensive preparedness and responses to outbreaks and identify and manage outbreak risks. The Department of Health and WorkSafe will coordinate intelligence and information on businesses that are non-compliant.
Mental Health and Support Resources
Remember to look after yourself and others during this time, and always ask for help if you need it.
If you are struggling the following services are available:
- National Coronavirus Helpline: 1800 020 080
- For immediate support call Lifeline on 13 11 14 and in an emergency, always call triple zero (000).
- Beyond Blue – 1300 22 4636
- Kids Help Line – 1800 55 1800