Update call held by USSquash on May 7th 2020 about ReOpen after COVID-19 + attached presentations
Updated: May 14
Email sent by Kim Clearkin - US Squash on May 7th 2020
Thanks to all of you who attended the Zoom call yesterday. We thought we would get a decent attendance but 91 was way beyond our expectations. A testament to how we can work as a community which we believe will be an important factor to getting through this situation. A copy of the presentation is attached.
The road to recovery for squash is unclear and more complicated in the US than anywhere else in the world. Of the 91 of you on the call there will almost certainly be 91 different timelines. But I think we will all go through the same process and have similar issues as we get through this. Therefore, our hope is that we can help each other to get to that other side more efficiently and quickly and if we can help to aggregate and disseminate information then that will be of value to all of you.
Notes from the meeting are given below which I encourage you to read – this email is long but has some important information.
Everyone needs to make sure they know their individual City, County, State and Federal guidelines. We can’t keep up with that degree of granularity – but you need to.
Please make sure to regularly check in to the US Squash COVID page - https://www.ussquash.com/covid-19/#restart. We will update this page with current information and we have started a player resource section too. Please see attached as well for general expectations for what players should expect when they go back to play.
Think about using an electrostatic sprayer for cleaning – much faster and kills viruses in seconds. Information has been added to the Cleaning section of the COVID page.
Develop your own set of protocols – that suit your individual situation and make sure you communicate them to your members. This will help them to trust that you are doing your best to make it safe for them to play when your courts are able to open. It also sets their expectation when they return to play.
Consider sending a survey to your members to find out what they will tolerate in terms of risk when coming back to play
Consider creating a video of the facility to your members in advance of opening.
Waivers: waivers may not hold up in a court of law, yet could still be valuable to you to ensure your members have read and understood your protocols. A local call as to whether you feel you need them.
When your club is open, as much as you have your guidelines in place be ready to adjust based on how your members react. For instance, first experience tells us people will want to socialize and you will want them to leave. Is there a middle ground?
Face mask or shield on court? Face masks may be impossible to use when playing, restricting breathing too much. Face shields could be helpful as a risk mitigator. Neither will eradicate the potential for transmission of the virus but mitigation is important and it is important your players see you taking as much precaution as possible. Enquiries for the face shield should be made to Richard Millman - https://imaskplusfaceshield.com/
Lobbying: US Squash can’t lobby at a Federal level since this is a locally guided return to play. In fact gyms are on the list of Phase 1 businesses to be able to open according to the Federal plan. But not all States are following that plan. It may be possible for individual stand-alone squash clubs to lobby their mayor for exceptions and for them to not be considered as gyms. This would need to be done at the local level.
There was also a request for more locally based groups to help each other. To that end if you would like to be part of a State based group please can you complete this form and then we can connect you all.
As we get through the next few weeks we hope more of you will be able to open your doors and we will be further on with our thinking regarding future phases. In essence we believe that this will start with a tight reign on distancing and sanitisation and that we will be able to gradually loosen the rope. That means starting cautiously and gradually building out from solo practice to the trusted groups.
We would also like to keep track of clubs that are open. When you are allowed to open the doors please can you let us know by completing this form. It represents a sign that we are moving in a positive direction and will also allow us to target information to you at appropriate times.
I hope you found the call yesterday helpful. We will plan for another towards the end of May when more clubs will be open. In the meantime if you have any information you feel would be helpful to the group and you would be prepared to share on the COVID page please forward that. We will be posting some information regarding solo practices and challenges that may be useful for you to use in that first phase early next week. Please continue to monitor the COVID page.
US Squash Tournaments Team
Harry, Graham, Sakora, Kimbley and Kim
Vice President Programs and Events