Last year over twelve hundred clubs and a hundred leagues took part in the FA’s ‘RESPECT - Set Your Stall Out’ weekend and for this season the FA has again provided a range of new RESPECT resources to help create a really positive environment in which young people can learn to play the game.
The FA’s RESPECT programme is now in its eighth season and although the volume of cautions are roughly the same - all dissent cautions - (abuse or back chat to referees) - has declined by 23%. The consensus of many leagues and clubs is that the environment for young people to learn the game has been improved by the introduction of designated spectator areas, RESPECT training for coaches, codes of conduct, Pitch Side Marshalls, Parents Briefings, and RESPECT signage.
This improvement is reflected in a decline in all misconduct charges, dismissals and to everyone’s relief - assaults on referees. There are now have approximately 27,000 registered referees up from circa 23,000 in 2008 - More importantly mentoring to young referees and the coverage of fixtures has improved considerably as has enjoyment of games.
FA Respect Manager – Dermot Collins said: “What these stats means in reality is a more positive and enjoyable environment for the game to take place in and because of this it’s much more likely that we keep coming back week after week - whether as players, referees, volunteers, parents or spectators.”
Staffordshire FA would love to hear from you throughout the weekend. Please feel free to Tweet us @StaffordshireFA or e-mail our County Communications Officer, Michelle Fatcher with any pictures or stories from throughout the weekend. Michelle can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org.