It’s now time to close all pools and gyms – COVID-19 Update
It is with regret that we provide some updated information regarding the most recent Government announcements associated with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) State of Emergency and the implications of those announcements on the aquatic and fitness Industry.
In the last 24 hours, the Federal and Victorian Governments have introduced comprehensive shutdowns of ‘non-essential’ services across the community, effective from midday today. This advice includes specific direction to shut ‘gyms and indoor sporting venues’. These shut-downs are in line with health advice from the National and Victorian State Chief Health Officers.
While Life Saving Victoria (LSV) and our partners at Royal Life Saving have requested clarification on outdoor facilities, LSV’s recommendation is that facilities suspend the operation of swimming pools, aquatic facilities, learn-to-swim pools and sport and recreation facilities. These closures are the responsible action to ensure the safety of staff and customers alike and to contribute to the broader community response to this pandemic.
Given the complexity of this issue and the need for consistent safety responses across the industry, the team at LSV has put together a dedicated webpage on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) for the aquatic and fitness Industry. This webpage provides responses to frequently asked questions (FAQs), as well as links to a number of support resources. LSV will be updating this page regularly as we move through the challenges of the coming months.
See the below link:
LSV encourages anybody with i) a question they would like answered in the FAQ, or ii) a resource they would like shared to email email@example.com
For owners/operators of aquatic facilities and management organisations, the focus should now shift to reducing the impact on staff, providing staff with appropriate support including mental health support and looking at opportunities for redeployment. LSV is working closely with Emergency Management Victoria to see if there are redeployment opportunities for industry, particularly staff that hold lifesaving and / or first aid qualifications.
LSV held a conference call with members of the Platinum Pools Steering Committee on Friday morning (20 March) and was both impressed and encouraged with the innovation, ingenuity, support and practical actions and solutions that these premier facilities had initiated to support their staff and customers in these difficult times. We will continue to work with the steering committee to share these ideas and innovations with the broader industry.
As part of supporting industry and leveraging the opportunity that these unprecedented closures offer, LSV is seeking to establish three task forces to lead major industry initiatives, which have been discussed, but have gone unresolved for many years:
- Joint procurement / group purchasing
- Reciprocal rights access to member facilities
- Rejuvenating regional public pools
Any person wishing to join a task force is encouraged to contact firstname.lastname@example.org
In these difficult times please ensure you prioritise the safety of yourself, your colleagues, your customers and your family and friends.