A MESSAGE TO COACHES AND PARENTS CONCERNING THE BEHAVIOUR AT EODSL GAMES
Hello EODSL teams,
I'm writing today, very frustrated at having spent many hours this week dealing with discipline regarding the behaviour of coaches and spectators at EODSL games.
Let me be very clear. There is no place in the EODSL for verbal or physical abuse of players, coaches or referees. This includes questioning referees on calls they have made. No-one has the right to question or speak to a referee unless they have been approached by said referee.
Imagine you were going about your daily job, and every time you made a mistake, or someone thought you made a mistake even though they don't fully understand your job, they publicly yelled and screamed at you. This is what referees deal with in almost every game. Some referees have to be escorted away from the field because they are afraid for their safety. Is it any wonder that we are struggling to find enough referees to work our games. This is a direct result of the ongoing abuse that referees withstand.
When a spectator abuses a referee their Club is subject to heavy discipline fines. Clubs have the right to have policies that state that spectators who cause discipline are required to pay any discipline fines. Coaches who abuse referees are subject to lengthy suspensions.
We can debate at length about the quality of referees, and the excuses that people give for yelling at referees, but they do not matter. Referee, player and coach abuse is not tolerated for any reason.
I am hoping that we can turn this behaviour around next week. Please do your part.
Ontario Soccer will soon be running courses to certify people to sit on discipline panels, deciding the result of charges for individuals. If you are passionate about helping to create a safe atmosphere in soccer, consider emailing me to add your name to our discipline panel course list.