Kyabram Free Press
Bowlers must be vaccinated
If you wish to participate in or be a spectator at lawn bowls matches in the region this summer, you must be fully vaccinated or hold a medical exemption.
That is the message from the Goulburn Murray Bowls Region after updated advice from Bowls Victoria was distributed on October 18.
It is expected that other summer sports will follow suit once their respective governing bodies finalise the specifics around vaccine mandates in the coming weeks.
Following an online meeting with BV — attended by president Alan Rogers and secretary Stephen Mcgregor — the GMBR has put in place a vaccination policy for the Goulburn Valley and Murray playing area seasons ahead.
"The region's board has set a policy on vaccination requirements for season 2021-22 as follows," a document distributed to the clubs of the region on Wednesday said.
"In the case of Goulburn Murray Bowls Region pennant, state and region events — all players and spectators must be fully vaccinated or hold an approved medical exemption.
"Responsibility for policing this policy will fall on: Club boards, club/ region selectors at venues — side managers/covid marshalls.
"If a bowler has not been vaccinated or does not hold an exemption (medical certificate) he/she cannot play pennant or enter state events.
"The region’s board, in setting the policy, is doing so due to the anticipated Victorian Government Road Rules for Community Sport, once the 80 per cent double vaccination has been achieved in Victoria.
"This policy is effective from November 5, 2021."
Pennant campaigns in the region are expected to roll-off on November 6.
"Additionally, all bowlers need to comply with COVID-19 restrictions set by clubs or interstate bodies eg. NSW regulation already implemented," the document continued.
"Request to all bowlers — please ensure you are double vaccinated or have a medical exemption before entering clubs and events.
"Bowlers will be required to show proof of vaccination via QR code entry to clubs or via official certificate.
"(The) Goulburn Murray Bowls Region ... board feel it is our duty of care to our fellow region bowlers being the primary concern when making this judgment.
"We look forward to all clubs being on board with our decision."
The advice from Bowls Victoria, which came into effect on October 22, states there is currently no exemption for an unknown vaccination status — meaning all involved in the sport will need to show proof of being doubled-dosed.
"Bowls Victoria will follow the government requirements for vaccination," the updated return to play guidelines state.
"There are no exceptions listed for an unknown vaccination status.
"Sport is available to the fully vaccinated, outdoor only DQ4 with a cap of 50 persons.
"Bowls Victoria interpret the cap to be 50 persons per green in line with the previous directions of zones for areas with multiple netball courts, football pitches, football ovals, cricket fields, or different sporting courts such as MSAC etc.
"It is also clear that the hospitality guidelines state that bowling clubs can open to 30 fully vaccinated people indoors and 100 outdoors.
"Vaccination status can be proven by any of the government approved methods.
"Clubs must still adhere to the limits as described in 'Number of Players' and the vaccination requirements for hospitality as listed in these guidelines."