Media workers at 'Champs' could see expansion of tribune


Media workers at 'Champs' could see expansion of tribune

Friday, November 13, 2020

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The long-awaited expansion of the media tribune at National Stadium could become reality next year at the Inter-secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA)Boys and Girls Championships (“Champs”), if the event is given the green light to to be staged.

For years the local media has been forced to cram into the sparse accomodations offered at the island's premier sporting venue, especially for the annual Champs that attracts media worldwide, with representatives in electronic and print forced to jostle for space.

Two other track and field events — the Racers Grand Prix as well as the Jamaica International Invitational — have also attracted strong media response from home and abroad.

With the onset of the novel coronavirus pandemic and the need for physical distancing, ISSA boss Keith Wellington said his organisation was well aware of the needs of the members of the Fourth Estate.

If Champs gets the go-ahead to be staged next year, there is a possibility that there could be restrictions on the numbers of fans allowed, if any at all, and with that in mind, Wellington told the Jamaica Observer that media's role in the event may become even more crucial.

“One of the things that we obviously are aware of is that media will play a bigger part in how Champs is presented [next year], and so part of the protocols and the plans that we will have in place is what kind of arrangements and facilitation that will be done for the media both electronic and print and otherwise,” said the ISSA president

ISSA has been consulting with stakeholders about the possibilities of holding Champs in 2021 after being forced to cancel the 2020 edition two weeks before it was scheduled to get underway. The Champs Committee is due to meet soon and Wellington said this was part of what they will be discussing.

“All of those things are among the things that we will get to the bottom of in a few weeks, and hopefully, we will be able to come up with something that will be acceptable to all parties involved, and when the time comes, we will be able to execute without much interference from COVID-19”, he said.

— Paul Reid

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