Professional sports organisations are workplaces and therefore are permitted to continue their operations at this time in NSW but are not permitted to operate with access to the general public. This means that professional sports training and competition can proceed without spectators or other public attendance provided they meet their work health and safety obligations and comply with relevant Ministerial directions and other legal requirements.
Professional sports organisations are expected to take reasonable and practicable measures to prevent transmission of COVID-19 within their teams and organisations. These measures should be described in a risk management plan for COVID-19, and organisations should ensure that their players and staff are compliant with this risk management plan. The NSW Government will not be approving these plans. The onus is on professional sports organisations, as employers, to develop appropriate plans and ensure compliance with such plans.
The risk management plan should be informed by the principles of infection prevention and control, and should include specific reference to the process for early identification and isolation of anyone connected with the organisation who develops symptoms of COVID-19 along with quarantine of their close contacts until they can be medically cleared or released.
If similar risk management arrangements are in place in other Australian States or Territories with travel restrictions currently in place, then NSW-based teams may be permitted to travel to the other jurisdiction to undertake the business of professional sport outside of NSW, at the discretion of the relevant jurisdiction and subject to compliance with any interstate orders. If these arrangements are not available in other States or Territories, then professional sporting activities taking place in NSW would initially need to involve only NSW-based teams.
Compliance and assurance
NSW Health recommends that professional sports organisations implement a robust compliance and assurance process to ensure that their risk management plan for COVID-19 is followed by all players and other staff.
Support to public health activities
A list of all people who have been in contact with individual players and staff should be documented and made available to NSW Health Public Health officials, were there to be a possible or confirmed case of COVID-19, for the purpose of assisting them with the process of contact tracing and outbreak investigation activities.