Arlington Soccer Association Statement on Player Safety

The pandemic and the recent disclosures and challenges faced by the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) has forced us to look inward and reflect on our mission, values, and priorities.  These troubling events are a reminder that the most important priority for us is the health, safety, and wellbeing of our players. The future of our club will be based on a players first approach. All decisions in our club will be guided by this approach. We will have zero-tolerance for any form of abuse directed to anyone in our club. 

Arlington Soccer Association is dedicated to “providing quality soccer programs and experiences for youth of all abilities, backgrounds and financial means to encourage personal growth, promote a love for the game, and advance soccer in Arlington and surrounding communities.”  We believe that the goal of youth sports is to provide a platform to accelerate a player’s personal development and create strengths (focus, respect for others, determination, teamwork, persistence, gratitude, resiliency, positivity & more) that they will carry with them for their entire life.

The health, safety, wellbeing and fair treatment of our players, parents, coaches, staff, and members are essential to creating productive and meaningful lifelong experiences that we can all be proud of and enjoy.  Our club is aligned with our mission, understands our values, and is committed to our highest priority-player safety.  We will live by our code of conduct, player safety and other club policies.  A summary of key provisions of this Code of Conduct includes, but are not limited to:

  • The health, safety, and well-being of our players is our highest priority. All other considerations are secondary.
  • We shall honor, respect, and treat everyone equally within the context of the game, regardless of gender, nationality, race, religion, sexual orientation, political belief, or economic status.
  • We shall never retaliate against any player, parent, coach, staff, or other members of our club regardless circumstances.
  • We shall always display the highest standards of behavior and professionalism.

Arlington Soccer Association is committed to being part of the solution to today’s problems in sports.  We will be launching a series of initiatives to ensure that our players remain safe, healthy, and active in the sport.  Some of these initiatives include but are not limited:

· A new tab on our website focused on player safety

· Publication of our coaches’ code of conduct

· Ongoing and recurring education and training for coaches & staff

· The ability to file a complaint without fear of retaliation

· Introduction of a Medical Advisory Committee

Arlington Soccer Association is committed being a leader in how to best promote a positive culture in youth sports. We will continue to ensure safe places to play and work for everyone in our community. We believe that this is in the best interest of the players, parents, coaches, staff, and all other members of our club. Finally, we believe this will be a turning point for our club as we embark on a journey towards a brighter future focused on players first with health, safety & well-being as our highest priority.

Frank DeMarco

Interim Executive Director

Arlington Soccer Association