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Outdoor sport resumes for under 18s

17 February 2021

From today, children (under 18) can take part in any outdoor sport or exercise so long as the number of participants does not exceed 35.

The Minister for Health and Social Services has amended the COVID-19 (Gathering Control) Order 2020 to ensure the exception is reflected in the law.

The Minister for Health and Social Services, Deputy Richard Renouf said: “I am pleased that we are in a position to open up sporting activities for young people. Sport and exercise is so important to our emotional and mental wellbeing, as well as our physical wellbeing.

“We are moving through our reconnection stages carefully to ensure the ongoing safety for all Islanders. The easing of measures considers a holistic view of Island life and all the risks associated with each stage. We must always maintain a balance of risks, both to public health and the economy, to ensure the ongoing security of lives and livelihoods. 

“We understand that many adults also want to be able to participate in indoor sports and exercise, or outdoor sports and exercise in groups of more than 10, so we are in contact with stakeholders and developing plans.

“With restaurants opening on Monday 22, it is important that we keep a close eye on how the combination of all reopening impacts our COVID-19 cases. It is sensible to assume we will see a rise in case numbers as a result people mixing again because COVID-19 hasn’t gone away. We therefore urge Islanders to please adhere to all current public health guidance which remains integral to any activity or service resuming at all.”

The amendment comes following approval from STAC and the Council of Ministers.

Deputy Medical Officer of Health, Dr Ivan Muscat said: “It is important that we lighten mitigation as soon as possible but it is absolutely vital that Islanders understand that the risk of COVID-19 transmitting in the community increases with each small easing. We must consider the impact that each move makes and implement mitigation measures to help prevent the spread as far as possible particularly as we have the Kent variant in Jersey, which is known to be far more transmissible.

“We must adhere to public health guidance and should not think that easing restrictions is a signal to ignore this guidance but indeed as a signal to strictly adhere to such guidance to ensure that we retain the newly regained freedoms.

“Islanders should keep the people they socialise with to small and consistent numbers and ensure that they can keep track of the people they spend time with to help our Contact Tracing team.”

Sports clubs and organisations have been provided with guidance for the safe reopening of services to keep their clients safe.

Islanders are reminded to download and use the COVID-19 Jersey App, which is now available for 13+, to protect anyone close to them who might be vulnerable should they come in direct contact with COVID.

Islanders should not take part in or visit any service if they are experiencing symptoms and should phone the helpline on 0800 735566 for further advice. 

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