Last night, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) amendedEmergency Order MCL 333.3353 – Gatherings and Face Mask Order. The new order takes effect on Thursday, May 6, 2021, and will be in effect through May 31, 2021. In short, all players, team officials and referees must continue to appropriately, and consistently, wear facial coverings, at all times upon arrival to, departure from and during MSYSA affiliated (indoor and outdoor) activities.
When indoors, all individuals must continue to wear facial coverings, at all times, unless eating or drinking. In addition, non-participants (i.e., spectators) attending an outdoor sporting event with under 100 people are not required to wear a facial covering. All outdoor spectators of a sporting event with over 100 people must wear a facial covering that covers both their nose and mouth, per MDHHS, regardless of their vaccination status.
Weekly testing (SARS-CoV-2) of all unvaccinated athletes (ages 13-19) is required for participation in organized sports, including youth (club) soccer. Unvaccinated participants (ages 13-19) can only participate in organized sports with proof of a negative diagnostic test (antigen or RT-PCR) on at least a weekly basis. Fully vaccinated persons are not subject to the weekly testing requirements set forth in section 6(f) of the Emergency Order, unless they have COVID-19-like symptoms. “Fully vaccinated persons” means persons for whom at least two weeks has passed after receiving the final dose of an FDA-approved or authorized COVID-19 vaccine. Participants who have recovered from confirmed COVID-19 in the past three months (and who remain symptom-free) are also not subject to these weekly testing requirements, if they can provide the appropriate “proof” or doctor’s letter as described in the MDHHS Interim Guidance for Athletics.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated their ‘Interim Public Health Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated People’ on April 27, 2021. In brief, the CDC continues to recommend requiring masking of those in crowded indoor/outdoor settings, and at sporting events/venues where there is decreased ability to maintain physical distance, until widespread vaccination is achieved.
At this time, there have been no changes to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Emergency Order Under MCL 333.2253. Additionally, there have been no changes to MSYSA’s Return-To-Play (RTP) Guidelines. Thus, all players, team officials, referees and spectators must appropriately, and consistently, wear facial coverings at all times upon arrival to, departure from and during MSYSA activities. Continued compliance on the appropriate and consistent use of facial coverings (whether vaccinated or not vaccinated) is needed to avoid the potential pause of specific team/club activities and/or a potential statewide stoppage. Please continue to do your part, and implore upon others to do their part, so that children can continue to play soccer.
Also, as a reminder, weekly testing (SARS-CoV-2) of all athletes (ages 13-19) is required for participation in organized sports, including youth (club) soccer, through May 24, 2021. This includes contact and non-contact activities. Any athletes (ages 13-19) who do not comply with the MDHHS weekly testing requirement, are not permitted to participate in any MSYSA-affiliated activities through May 24, 2021.
In closing, our next (Zoom) conference call is scheduled for Friday, May 7, 2021 at 4 PM. Any edits or changes to our RTP guidelines will be communicated at that time. The Zoom call-in credentials will be sent by separate email to club and league representatives only.