Over the top parents who yell and scream during their children’s sporting fixtures will be told to pipe down in a new initiative to encourage them to be good sports.
The Daily Telegraph has revealed that the new guidelines will remind adults on the sidelines during kids sports to “keep it fun” and not to take the competition “too seriously”.
Almost 800 clubs and associations across all sporting codes have signed on to ensure that advice such as “Let coaches do the coaching” and “think before you speak: your words may harm” become part of the fabric of the sporting culture.
The rules also advise parents to accept officials’ decisions as “they’re human — they make mistakes” amid concerns over abuse of referees.
Minister for Sport Stuart Ayres said:
“We really want to raise awareness right across the community,”
“If you’re standing on your sidelines — cheer your kids absolutely. But if the instinct kicks in to yell at the referee or have a crack at someone … the ‘shoosh for kids’ will make that person stop.”
Before games, kids and officials alike will “shoosh” the crowd to remind spectators to keep their comments positive.
The guidelines state “if inappropriate behaviour is being displayed after this, the participants and officials stop, turn to the audience and ‘shoosh’ them”.
Mr Ayres said:
“There is no doubt we had seen a trend … on the side of community sporting grounds that we didn’t like. There was far too much hostility, far too much abuse of officials.”
“No one wants to rock up to work in any form and get abused by people,” he said.
Cricket NSW chief executive Andrew Jones said:
“It’s important for kids to enjoy their sport without feeling harassed,”
“No one starts out at as Ellyse Perry or Lionel Messi, they need to learn the game, make mistakes and just do their best.”