COVID-19: SNSW advice

Lane Rope in a pool

In recent days there has been an escalation of the COVID-19 situation globally, and closer to home in NSW.  As a result, we felt it appropriate to provide advice for all clubs, coaches, members and associated persons.  In providing this advice we have considered Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, NSW Health, Australian Institute of Sport, and the World Health Organisation and other authorities, including Swimming Australia, to make decisions in the best interests of the health and welfare of our members, volunteers and families.

As this is a rapidly changing situation, Swimming NSW will continue to provide relevant updates through this dedicated page.

Please also note the following SNSW Hygiene Best Practices, which are widely considered by health experts to be key to disease prevention and management.

We understand that this is a worrying time for many in our community. We want to assure you that our staff and SNSW Board are responding to the situation as it evolves.

Thank you again for your ongoing support in putting the health and safety of our Swimming NSW family first.

Latest updates

  • 26 March 2020: Governance advice and support available to clubs
  • From changes to how clubs can operate in the current environment to the longer-term financial implications, the COVID-19 impact on sport at all levels will be significant.

    We've compiled some information that can help clubs to navigate some of the uncertainty and access crucial government support and assistance. Click here for more.

  • 25 March 2020: Additional event cancellations
  • The COVID-19 situation is ever-changing and there is much uncertainty ahead in terms of the depth, duration and scale of the challenges we are facing.

    The Government continues to announce new measures each day to combat the spread of the virus and protect Australians as best as possible, the key focus of which has been to keep people separated. This is extremely important at this time and we encourage all of our members to comply with this advice. Learn more about the government's social distancing advice.

    Last night, the Prime Minister announced that all swimming pools should close and this effectively means that our sport will stop for a period of time, along with our learn to swim pipeline. We by no means underestimate the effect that this will have on our sport right now and moving forward, however, we know that this situation is only temporary and we hope that you will all be back swimming in the not too distant future.

    Swimming NSW is working hard to develop ways we can support our members during this very difficult time and we encourage everyone to look after themselves, as well as their family and friends. Our youth mental health partner, ReachOut Australia, has provided us with some easy tips that can help you to manage your wellbeing during these uncertain times

    In further event announcements, Swimming NSW alongside Uni Sport Australia have made the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 Sydney Open & Uni Sport Nationals meet that was scheduled for 14-17 May 2020. UniSport is exploring options to host the Nationals Swimming championships later in the year and will provide further updates as they become available.

    All swimmers that entered via Swim Central will have their fees refunded back to the card that was used to make the purchase. You should see these funds within 10-14 days, depending on your bank. If you completed entries via the online form, your payment had not yet been processed, so no funds have been taken.

    Further event announcements will be made as required and once further information is forthcoming from the relevant Government authorities. You can also visit Swimming Australia for a current list of event changes and other advice.

  • 20 March 2020: NSW Junior State Age Championships CANCELLED
  • As our members would be aware, the COVID 19 situation is ever-changing and there is much uncertainty ahead in terms of the depth, duration and scale of the challenges we are facing.

    The Government continues to announce new measures each day to combat the spread of the virus and protect Australians as best as possible, the key focus of which has been to keep people apart. 

    Last week we postponed our Junior State Age Championships until May with the hope that a quick resolution would be possible, however the Government has repeated today that for these measures to be effective they will need to be in place for some time. 

    Therefore Swimming NSW has made the decision to cancel the 2020 Junior State Age Championships. With over 2500 competitors and spectators, it would have been both impossible and irresponsible to try and go ahead with this event in the current circumstances.

    We are continuing to review the Sydney Open event with UniSport Australia as well our upcoming Swim League and Short Course seasons and will keep our members informed of any changes via this page, social media and our other communications channels. 

    We are aware that pools are beginning to close across the State and that even training is not possible for many of you. It is important to note that this situation is only temporary and that you will all be back swimming in the not too distant future. In the meantime, Swimming NSW encourages you to look after yourselves as well as your family and friends. Click here have a look at ReachOut’s 10 tips for taking care of yourself during this COVID-19 situation.

    Anyone who has entered the event will receive a full refund. 

    We thank you for your understanding. 

  • 18 March 2020: Further restrictions on gatherings (100+ people)
  • Today, the Prime Minister announced further restrictions on organised gatherings, banning all non-essential INDOOR organised gatherings of 100+ people, in addition to its previous limits on all non-essential OUTDOOR gatherings of 500+ people, which became effective earlier this week. This new restriction is effective immediately. 

    As detailed on the Federal Government's Department of Health website, indoor gatherings are classified as a gathering that 'takes place within a single enclosed area (i.e. a single room or area)'. The government is encouraging social distancing and good hygiene practices for indoor gatherings of less than 100. You can read more about the government's advice regarding indoor gatherings (both below and over 100) here.  

    The government also issued some Community Sport Guidelines. Although swimming pools are not required to close at this time, several councils have already made the precautionary decision to close aquatic centres and swimming pools in response to this latest announcement. If you are in doubt, please check your local council for advice specific to your area.

  • 15 March 2020: Restrictions on mass gatherings (500+ people)
  • On Friday 13 March, the Prime Minister issued a statement advising against organised public gatherings of more than 500 people from Monday, 16 March 2020. 

    As a result of this, and the rapidly changing environment, Swimming NSW has updated its advice for the NSW swimming community. In providing this advice, we have also considered Department of Foreign Affairs and TradeNSW HealthAustralian Institute of Sport, the World Health Organisation and other authorities, including Swimming Australia, to make decisions in the best interests of the health and welfare of our members, volunteers and families.

    • From 16 March 2020, Swimming NSW advises against hosting any swimming competition in NSW for a period of 30 days.
    • SNSW has postponed the 2020 NSW Junior State Championship.
    • SNSW has instructed all staff (not including pool deck coaches) not to attend NSW Swimming Programs for a period of 30 days.

    Our advice of 8 March, relating to self-quarantining and international travel, is also updated to now include all international travel to any country, NOT just those countries listed.

  • 14 March 2020: NSW Junior State Age Championships postponed
  • In response to the federal government's recommendation (13 March) to suspend all non-essential gatherings of 500+ people, Swimming NSW has decided to postpone the upcoming Junior State Age Championships to 9-10 May 2020. Read more

  • 8 March 2020: COVID-19 advice
  • Based on government sources, our current advice is as follows:

    • Any person who travels to or transits through the following countries must self-quarantine for 14 days after landing in Australia:

      • Mainland China

      • Iran

      • Italy

      • South Korea

      • Japan

      • Cambodia

      • Thailand

      • Indonesia

      • Mongolia

      • Singapore

      • Hong Kong

    Our current advice around international travel is in line with Government alerts – this list of countries may change as the situation evolves.  Please refer to the Australia Department of Health website for a list of countries and regions considered to pose a risk of transmission of COVID-19. This list is based on the risk of the person having been exposed to COVID-19 due to travel to a country and region with sustained community transmission and/or based on the patterns of travel between those countries and regions and Australia, and/or the other epidemiological evidence.  Further, following our own external advice we have also included Mongolia on our list of countries due to the poor standard of medical care and high degree of risk of transmission. You can read more about the latest Government update regarding Mongolia here.

    • Any person who has close contact with a person who has travelled to or transits through the above countries must self-quarantine for 14 days after being in contact with that person.

    • Any person who has been in contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, must self-quarantine as outlined above and notify their Club/ Coach.

    • Any person who has been in contact with a person with suspected COVID-19, must self-quarantine as outlined above and notify their Club/ Coach. If you find out that the suspected case has tested negative to COVID-19 you can return to training/ competition prior to the 14 days.

    • If a squad member is diagnosed with COVID-19, that squad should be immediately self-quarantined and each member of that squad should be suspended from competition for 14 days.

    • All international tours to the above countries, should be postponed or cancelled.

    If any member is in a situation where they are unable to participate in a SNSW event as a result of the above advice, please email the following address to arrange for a refund of your entry fees: meet.entries@nsw.swimming.org.au

    If you have any queries about whether you should be attending training or competitions, please err on the side of caution.

    As a precautionary measure, and for the safety of all our members, all peoples (coach/athlete/parent/official) who are unwell for any reason should not attend training or any competition.  If an unwell athlete/coach/official or parent presents at any SNSW event, squad or activity they will be asked to immediately leave the facility.

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