FAI Match Day Protocals for referees returning post Covid
Please see below letter from ISRS President Paul O’Brien and also the return to refereeing protocol which can be found on our documents page here
FAI return to Training Protocol
While this is aimed toward those playing as oppossed to us officals it may give us referees an insight as to what to expect when we are able to resume our group trainings. As always if you have any worries or concerns relating to Covid-19 please don’t hesitate to contact us.
You can find the FAI return to training protocal in our documents section here
A letter from ISRS President Paul O’Brien
There is a new number for our Secretary Seán Slattery. He can now be contacted only on 083 098 8178
Please see a letter from Chairman Dave Fitzsimons to our members dates 6th June 2020
- Firstly, I hope you and your families are keeping safe during our current Covid 19 situation. Remember to keep up all our good work and hopefully soon we will return to some form of normality. As we are aware the situation changes from day to day and we are afforded more freedom of movement etc. as we successfully fight against this dreaded disease.
- Please daily remember our elderly family members and friends and of course our frontline colleagues.
- This morning myself and Paul Tuite on behalf of the Dublin Branch attended a zoom meeting organised by our President Paul O Brien and his committee. This meeting was attended by over 30 members of various branches country wide and all made a massive contribution to this very informative Zoom meeting. There were also two representatives from the F.A.I at the meeting Gerard Perry (Chair of the referees committee) and Ger McDermott who is currently on the F.A.I strategy committee for a return to football.
- There a numerous question I know you all want to ask and I will try my best to cover the most important topics discussed this morning.
Protocols and procedures:
- The F.A.I and society branches nationwide are guided and bound by the protocols currently laid out by the Government, Hse, Nephet and all instructions are to be adhered too. This includes social distancing, meetings, hand washing, social gatherings and all that we have been listening to over the past 3 months or so.
- I was clearly stated this morning that NO insurance company will insure anyone from catching the Covid 19 disease and this also applies to referees. So therefore, the current insurance policy is suspended. You are directed not to participate in any type of football from a refereeing point of view until proper guidelines, Protocols and procedures are put in place and signed off by our national council. All will be advised when this is achieved.
- A Risk assessment will be drawn up by the F.A.I. strategy committee which will cover the best practice and safety procedures to be adhered to. This will also apply to coaches, players, parents and spectators at grounds. Please note that this is NOT for the referee to police. Each club we must supply their own compliance officer for this role.
Return to Training & Playing:
- There were some 30 bullet points been looked at currently by the strategy committee within the F.A.I prior to the resumption of any type of football. Some of the questions that arouse form our delegates and members from our branches were.
- Procedures for referees & Players before during and after the game.
- Spitting.(at the referee or opponent)
- Coughing at a referee or opponent.
- Use of water bottles.
- Dressing rooms and use of. (Social distancing)
- Mass melees or confrontations during a game.
- Does the referee have more to deal with like spectator control and the number of spectators allowed into the venue? Again, NO this is for the Clubs compliance officer.
- Spectators standing behind the assistant referee.
- The sanitation of the match ball etc, players sweat on the ball while taken a throw in.
- Keeper spitting on his gloves and then handling the ball.
- Observers briefing after the game.
- Every question you can possibly think of was already asked and will be addressed in due course.
- You are presently NOT covered for training in groups or in any form, although for your personal fitness and wellbeing I recommend your keep your fitness levels up to scratch. A good walk ,cycle or jog is good for everyone. We will be able to go back to group training in venues when protocols and procedures are drafted up.
Protocols for Officials:
- It is hoped to have protocols for officials drawn up soon, the F.A.I strategy committee are looking onto setting these up, which should happen quite soon.
- As you are aware are cancelled for this year and you retain your grade for the next season. There are plans afoot for a new category for next season as we previously spoke about which will then change the format for certain seminars and modules going forward for referees looking to advance their grades and referee at a higher grade, Airtricity, Intermediate etc, these will all be discussed in the future.
Modules and Education:
As well as from an educational point of view, these will also have to change and be brought up to date to allow for procedures, compliance and risk assessments going forward.
I want / don’t want to return to refereeing:
- Some referees have said the do not wish to return to referring until a vaccination has been found.
- This is quite understandable and of course is a personal choice.
- There will be NO undue pressure applied to any individual to return to active referring and you should only return when you wish to do so.
- I have been guaranteed that no referee will be in any way demoted, down graded or receive lesser matches if he does not wish to return until he is ready, having said that you should maintain the desired level of fitness to the grade you currently hold.
I hope you find this message useful and I hope to have more news to share with you all soon.
Again, stay safe and I wish you and your families al the best going forward.
Announcement from the AFL
Announcement from the AUL for our members who officiate in their league.
Update from the DDSL for our members who officiate in their league.
A letter from Chairman Dave Fitzsimons to our members
- I hope this email finds you & your families in good health during this current climate.
- Including myself I am sure there are other members amongst use that have been effected in one way or another by this Corona Virus, whether it been the loss of a relative , friend, colleague or even the loss of ones employment.
- In these current times it really puts things into perspective.
- May I take this opportunity to thank all our members & their families who are front line workers, Hospital employees, Care Home workers, Fire & Ambulance services, members of An Garda Siochana & the Defence Forces, Postal services & Essential services workers (Including those who provide our transport, Supermarket and shopkeepers and those wonderful people who give up their free time to care for our elderly.)
- Hopefully we will all come out of this safe & well and a vaccination is found soon, until then we will have to get use to the new normal (Social distancing, wearing masks, social interaction, hand hygiene etc).
- I am unsure if football as we know it will ever return to where we were prior to this virus.
- I would really like to think that we are all remaining in some sort of contact with our colleagues and friends from the referring and football family, please bear in mind some of our elderly members past or present from your league and give them a call when possible and don’t assume some one else has done it.
- Today I have requested our Branch P.R.O Seán O Connor to post up on our website the weekly education programme that Rob Hennessey from the F.A.I has been forwarding to members via email and asked Danny Lambe to do likewise on our Facebbook page for people who don’t have an email address. It is a very interesting programme of education put together by Rob. These can be found HERE under our education section
- I hope we are all still keeping active by either, running, walking or cycling. Not only is it good for our physical fitness but our mental health also.
- Council have suspended all Branch and council meeting for the foreseeable further, although they are in contact with us and we have meeting via Zoom on the 6th of June.
- We hope to be joined by at least 2 members of the F.A.I on this date and will post any information arising from this meeting on our site.
- I know some leagues are talking about resumption of football mid to late August, but for our members there are a lot of issues to be sorted out first and I can assure you the health and safety of our members and their families come first and foremost, so please do not listen to any idle gossip from any other quarter.
- Finally take care and God Bless you and your families.
Urgent Volunteers required by Irish Blood Transfusion Services
Since 2015 Giveblood.ie has been a sponsor of FAI Referee’s appearing on all our National Panels kit. They are currently looking for volunteers to help in their clinics. Below is a letter from Paul Meaney who is the Risk & Resilience Manager of the Irish Blood Transfusion Service with information on the type of help they are looking for. Our colleagues in the ISRS in Cork have been doing this and we ask any of our members who may be able to volunteer to help to please do so. While you’re not required to donate blood yourself all volunteers need to be under 70, in good health and not be showing any symptoms of Covid – 19. There are centre’s in both Stillorgan and the City Centre in particular where volunteers are required. We’d ask any member who may be able to give even just a small bit of time to help this worthy cause to please do so.
Important message from the Football Association of Ireland
Notice from Rob Hennessey in the FAI Referees Department.
All Grassroots Referee Development Modules and Referee Beginner courses scheduled to take place in March have been postponed following directives from Government, the Department of Health and UEFA.
The decision has been taken in light of the growing threat posed by the COVID-19 outbreak and in the best interests of all concerned.
New dates will be arranged after March 29th and the FAI remains in communication with the Department of Health and UEFA on COVID-19 and will continue to follow all government guidelines
Due to the government announcement we will be cancelling this evenings meeting with immediate effect.
We’d ask you to also pass the word to your colleagues who may not see this message.
We’d continue to ask you all to be vigilant in this time and to stay up to date with updates from the FAI and HSE as well as your league.
Reminder out next Branch meeting is this coming Thursday (tomorrow) March 12th at 8pm in the Mission Hall, Abbey Street. Beginners Class will begin at 7pm
We would like to remind all of our members that the FAI have issued a directive to all participants in games to not shake hands to prevent any possible spread of the Covid-19 virus. This includes players, officials, club officials and even your assistants/4th officials.
The committee would like to offer its deepest condolences to the family and friends of long term member Andy Wardick. Andy passed away peacefully on 8th March after a battle with illness. We offer our support and prayers to Andy’s wife Jacqueline and his sons Bryan and Carl. Andy has been a credit to his branch and league for a number of years and will be sorely missed. We ask all members to observe a minutes silence on games this weekend in respect of Andy.
Removal for Andy will be Friday 13th March from Fanagans Funeral Home in Rathfarnham to The Church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel (Firhouse) arriving at 5pm. Funeral mass Saturday March 14th at 10am followed by burial at Kilmashogue Cemerery. All members attending are asked to wear society shirt, tie and blazer where possible.
May he rest in peace
The committee of the branch must sadly inform it’s members of the death of ISRS Dublin member Mark Whelan.
Mark is a long standing member of the branch and a credit to refereeing in Ireland and around the world.
Mark had a passion for all type of football in particular for those who had disabilities and represented his country in refereeing a number of international tournaments. Mark will be missed by his wife and two sons and we’ll as all his colleagues in both the Dublin branch and Nationally
Mark will be reposing at his home on Monday March 2nd from 5pm-8pm. Removal to the Church of the Resurrection, Bayside on Tuesday March 3rd arriving at 9:50am for 10am Mass. Society members are asked to wear their shirt/tie/blazer where possible when attending the service.
In memory of Mark we’d ask all members to hold a minutes silence prior to their games from Monday 2nd March up to and including Sunday 8th March in respect of Mark’s memory.
Congratulations to your incoming committee for 2020/21
Chairman – Dave Fitzsimons
Vice Chairman – Paul Tuite
Treasurer – Eddie Reilly
Assistant Treasurer – Paddy Hughes
Secretary – Seán Slattery
Thank you also to our outgoing committee members for their work throughout the year and for those who put their names forward for positions.
Below are the dates for the Dublin seminars of 2020. All seminars will take place at the ALSAA complex
Weeks’ notice to the DRRC through their Lead Observer who shall then inform the DRRC of
this request. The Referee will be initially offered a place on the Alternate Seminar on Sat 30th May
Any referee seeking to change the date of their Seminar without giving a minimum Two
Weeks’ notice period will be offered a place at the Medical Repeat Seminar in July at a cost
of €75 plus registration fee of €25.
AGM will take place at 7pm sharp on Thursday 27th February. Registration will begin at 6:15pm and it is suggested you arrive early to ensure you receive your voting slips. There will be no beginners class on the night.
Currently we have recieved 2 x nominations for Chairman, 1 for Secretary, 2 for Treasurer and 2 for Vice Chairman as well as a number of ordinary committee members.
All candiates will be published on the website and Facebook page prior to the AGM Vote.
Anyone interested in running for any of the remaining officer positions (Assistant Secretary, Assistant Treasurer, Equipment Officer) or ordinary committee members please send your nomination, who you’re proposed by and who you’re seconded by to Hon. Secretary, Seán Slattery via firstname.lastname@example.org no later than 7pm on 13th February
Change of Training Venue
Training has moved temporarily away from the VEC on Tuesdays to Inchicore Athletic all weather pitch WEDNESDAYs at 6pm.
For further information please contact Anto Carey on 0872553443
Additional training venues include Ballymun United, 8pm Wednesday and Balbriggan Beach 730pm.
Full details are found on our training page
Footwear on All Weather Pitches
Members are reminded that no club or facility can stop a referee from wearing a certain type of footwear in any sanctioned game.
If in the event you are refused entry to a pitch due to your choice of footwear (ie flats on an astro) get the card filled out, collect your fee and report this to the competition organisers.
Any member who is a victim of an assault should immediately follow the below Abandon the game
Contact the Gardaí
Report the incident to both the competition organiser and to the branch secretary
Never speak to any media or third party in relation to the incident without getting advice from the branch
Seek guidance from a member of the committee or senior referee in your league if you are struggling with anything in regards the report
Make sure all facts are correct, accurate and truthful
If a member of the branch is contacted by the FAI or DRRC in relation to any matter please don’t hesitate to contact the branch secretary in confidence for guidance on the matter.
The FAI are unable to contact the branch directly about your matter however once you make contact with us we will give you our full support in any way we can on the matter. Our number 1 role as your committee is to serve and support you as our members. We can’t stress enough how much we will help and support we’ll give you once you ask us
The 6 from 9 rule is in existence for the benefit of all members. In addition to this it was brought in by the members and not by the committee. Any member of the branch is required to attend 6 from 9 meetings. Those unable to attend can request to be excused via email or post (Text message, phone call or comment on Facebook/Website will not suffice) to the Hon. Secretary Seán Slattery 7 days before or after the meeting.
Final call for all our members looking for tickets for the 60th anniversary dinner tomorrow in the Red Cow Moan Hotel. for ticket queries please contact Tony Redmond ASAP. For those attending doors are 7:15 with seating commencing at 7:45
The Dublin Branch would like to wish Paul Norton (LSL), Aaron Pisarnik (LSL), Brian Lawless (AUL), Fintan Butler (DDSL), Lee Duffy (LSL), Mark Gallagher (AFL), Mark Houlihan (AUL), Mark Patchell (LSL), Orla Devaney (NDSL), Paul Mooney (LSL), Seán O’Connor (LSL) and Seán Stephens (LSL) all the best in their final module and graduation from the FAI School of Excellence.
We would like to thank Dublin Branch Life Memebers Ian Stokes and Declan Hanney, former branch member Conor Fitzgerald and Martin Maloney of the Kildare branch for their help and dedication given to the school and support to our members throughout the process.
Congratulations to Mark Houlihan (centre) for winning AUL Referee of the year
The branch would also like to wish Leinster Senior League Referee Joe Boylan a speedy recovery from his recent operation and hope to see Joe back in the middle of a pitch as soon as possible.
The Committee would like to thank Eamon Scott of the Striker Online and Daniel Kelly of the FAI Communications department for their help and contribution to our website supplying our new images.