Associations Update – March 18

18 March, 2020

In this unpredictable and difficult time, we wanted to reassure you of our ongoing help and support. The decision to suspend all basketball related activities, programs and events was not an easy one to make. We understand that you may have questions and concerns and would like a clearer idea about the what might happen in the future.
In the short term we will continue to provide updates every week, including the dedicated COVID-19 area on our website for relevant updates, information and tools that associations can access to assist in keeping members engaged.

Specific updates 

Domestic / Social Basketball 

Although the immediate focus is to understand how the current conditions affect us all, we also want to plan for the return of basketball and, in particular, for the return of grassroots, community basketball.

There are many associations that have already begun planning for ways to keep participants engaged while formal competitions have been postponed. We will also be working on strategies to help with this and these will be shared with you in due course.

We are mindful that we do not want to lose participants to other activities or sports during this period. These engagement strategies will be targeted to all members of our community, including participants, volunteers, coaches and referees.

At this point, Victorian competitions are suspended/postponed. We are planning for the resumption of competition although, understandably, there is considerable uncertainty about timelines. We will provide further updates as soon as more information comes to hand.

Aussie Hoops, 3×3 and Other Programs 
Basketball Australia recommends all term one Aussie Hoops programs should be suspended immediately. Additionally, term two Aussie Hoops programs and registrations have also been suspended. Basketball Australia will not be accepting or processing term two registrations or participant pack orders until further notice. All participants who have registered for a term two Aussie Hoops program will be entitled to a full refund as per the Aussie Hoops Refund Policy. Additionally, Basketball Australia has determined the programs identified below will be placed on hold until further notice:

  • Walking Basketball
  • 3X3 Community Hustle
  • National Wheelchair Basketball Leagues (Men’s & Women’s).

Leagues 
We are exploring alternative scheduling options for NBL1, Big V and VJBL for 2020. We will provide as much notice as possible on any decisions made in relation to these leagues.

Specific Big V and NBL1 notifications will be sent to club delegates in addition to this information.

High Performance 
Basketball Australia (BA) have announced that the Under 18 Australian Junior Championships and Kevin Coombs Cup, scheduled for April, will no longer be proceeding. At this stage BA are investigating the option of moving these championships to a different date. Basketball Australia has advised all teams, as well as their families and supporters, to cancel existing travel arrangements and take advantage of credit being offered by providers.

State Development Programs, Country Championships and Under 14 Skills Days have also been suspended for the foreseeable future.

There are currently a number of Victorians playing overseas for Colleges, Academies, High Schools or Leagues. We will be endeavouring to contact these participants and their families to offer our support during this time.

Workplace Health & Safety 
Please be aware of your health and safety obligations. For instance, you may need to provide extra cleaning services and hand washing signs/reminders. You may also want to keep  a record of visitors (reporting contact details) and limit face-to-face meetings where possible (e.g. instead, have telephone or remote meetings).

Individuals
If employees or volunteers are sick, they should not be coming to work. If they are full-time or part-time they can access sick leave. They may also need to utilise Carers Leave if a member of their immediate family or someone in their household falls ill and they need to care for them.

Ensure you have up-to-date contact details and emergency contact details for all employees. If you have staff, you will need to be aware of those who are critical to the business. Furthermore, you will need to consider what arrangements you have in place if a critical staff member were to become unable to work.

It is important to note, you cannot terminate an individual’s employment due to temporary sickness.

If you have access to wellbeing officers, Employment Assistant Programs or (if applicable) chaplaincy services please make their contact details available to your staff and volunteers.

In addition, there is a helpline and information for coronavirus specific information for individuals on theFairwork site.

At present, the Fair Work Act (2009) does not specifically address situations where employees are stuck overseas or required to self-isolate. There are no specific rules yet, so employees and employers must come to their own arrangements. The Fair Work Ombudsman has provided some recommendations on its website.

Economic Impact 
We understand that many of you will be facing difficult economic times. We are advocating to Basketball Australia, Sport Australia, VicSport and Sport & Recreation Victoria to secure industry assistance as soon as possible. We may ask you to provide some business information in the near future to assist us with this advocacy.

External Assistance 

  • Talk to your banks to seek advice and support. The Australian Banking Association has stated that banks can help with items such as loan repayments, fees and overdraft extensions.
  • The Federal Government’s Stimulus Package may assist some associations in areas such as cashflow assistance (details can be found here).
  • We are also communicating with Sport and Recreation Victoria and will be able to provide a list of available grants when they come to hand

Facilities 
If you require any assistance regarding facilities, rent, license agreements, etc.,  please direct queries to BV’s Mark Hubbard: mark.hubbard@basketballvictoria.com.au

In addition, letters of support from Basketball Victoria can be drafted for Association use if required.

Insurance 
We have received advice from V-Insurance regarding personal accident, management liability and travel insurance. The updated information can be found here.

We understand this is a challenging time for everyone in the community. We are here to support you as much as we can during this period. Please contact us if you have any further questions, queries or ideas.
Please visit our COVID-19 page for further information and updates:  http://basketballvictoria.com.au/covid-19/

Regards,

Nick Honey

Basketball Victoria CEO

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