Safety ‘at the Heart’ of Football Quebec’s Action Plan

In an effort to “continually ensure the safe practise of sport,” Football Quebec has announced the creation of a working group on safety in football, as well as modifications to its safety regulations rulebook.

These new actions are in line with a myriad of new safety measures adopted over the last year. Those included the adoption of new game rules at the start of the 2014 season, new training standards for coaches related to safe tackling and head injuries and the creation of a full-time position focused on sport safety and development.

Five Experts To Examine the Major Issues in Quebec Football

This permanent and independent working group focused on football safety will study various possibilities in terms of sport safety practises and will make recommendations to the Federation’s Board of Directors.

Working Group participants have expertise in various areas of Quebec and Canadian football, and also bring to the table their own individual experience and knowledge:

–         Tim Fleiszer, former professional player in the Canadian National Football League, player agent, and Director of the Canadian Branch of the Sport Legacy Institute – an international research group recognized for its scientific contributions to concussion research in sport.

–         Patrick Gendron, Chief Athletic Therapist of the Université de Montréal Carabins and member of the Conseil de médecine du sport du Québec (CMSQ).

–         Étienne Boulay, former professional player in the Canadian National Football League.

–         Roland Grand’Maison, Lawyer specialized in sport, former Director of Collegiate Programs with Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec (RSEQ).

–         Bernard Daigneault, former referee and Provincial Assignments Supervisor, Administrator,Quebec Provincial Football Officials Association (QPFOA).

Modifications To Safety Regulations

The newly formed working group has already had its first meeting to study current Federation safety regulations rulebook, and issued preliminary proposals to the Board of Directors as of March 11, 2015. The following modifications were ratified:

1)      Currently in Quebec, a First Aid Attendant has to be present during games and contact-training. The Board of Directors has adopted a new measure specifying that during games, each team must have its own First Aid Attendant, and that this individual can’t be part of the coaching staff of either team.

2)     As of immediately, all teams must be equipped with a recognized return-to-play protocol for athletes following concussions. The Federation also recommends the protocol approved by the Corporation des thérapeutes du sport du Québec (CTSQ).

3)     As of August 15, 2016, during all games and contact training, all football teams in Quebec must have in attendance an individual having successfully taken (or having equivalent skills approved by the Federation) the newly developed “Football First-Aid” (Secourisme Football) certification – developed in partnership with the Red Cross, the Corporation des thérapeutes du sport du Québec, and the Conseil de médecine du sport du Québec (CMSQ).

This specialized training comprises elements related to: first-aid specific to the sport of football; current identification standards for concussions and return-to-play protocol; football equipment removal in order to facilitate ambulance / medical assistance.

Football Quebec has also established a Football First-Aid (Secourisme Football) program training schedule that is currently available for viewing and registration on the Federation’s website at www.footballquebec.com.

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