Association responds to FIFA Amendments (Protection of Minors)

The Canadian Soccer Association wishes to clarify its position on the recent FIFA amendments to the Regulations for the Status and Transfer of Players (Protection of Minors) in regards to Academies.
At its meetings on 18 December 2008 and 19 March 2009, the FIFA Executive approved a number of amendments to its Regulations for the Status and Transfer of Players (Protection of Minors) that took effect as of 1 October 2009. Article 19 and 19bis of this regulation have been placed on the list of articles that are binding at the national level and must be included, without amendment, in association regulations.

The Canadian Soccer Association wishes to clarify its position on the recent FIFA amendments to the Regulations for the Status and Transfer of Players (Protection of Minors) in regards to Academies.
At its meetings on 18 December 2008 and 19 March 2009, the FIFA Executive approved a number of amendments to its Regulations for the Status and Transfer of Players (Protection of Minors) that took effect as of 1 October 2009. Article 19 and 19bis of this regulation have been placed on the list of articles that are binding at the national level and must be included, without amendment, in association regulations.
Article 19bis requires that each national association is obliged to ensure that all academies without legal, financial or de facto links to a club:
a) run a club that participates in the relevant national championships; all players shall be reported to the association upon whose territory the academy operates, or registered with the club itself:
OR
b) report all minors who attend the academy for the purpose of training to the association upon whose territory the academy operates.
In response to some of the existing information that has been published regarding the effect these amendments have on the existing Academies in Canada, the Canadian Soccer Association will now provide clarification through a series of Questions and Answers.
Q: What action has the Canadian Soccer Association taken in response to the new Amendments?
A: This Amendment was discussed by the Board of the Canadian Soccer Association and, in recognizing the need to provide the information to FIFA, directed that minors (defined as players under the age of 18 years) in academies without links to a club will need to be reported to the Provincial Association upon whose territory the academy operates.
Q: What are the next steps for the Canadian Soccer Association?
A: The Canadian Soccer Association advised its Provincial and Territorial Associations of the requirement and is working with them to establish the effect that this FIFA ruling will have across the country. The FIFA mandated Amendments to the CSA regulations were tabled at the most recent meeting of the Board. This will be revisited during the Board meeting in December following FIFA’s response to a clarification on Article 19 and 19bis.
Q: What is an Academy?
A: An Academy is defined by FIFA as “an organization or an independent legal entity whose primary long term objective is to provide players with long term training through the provision of the necessary training facilities and infrastructure. This shall primarily include, but not be limited to, football training centres, football camps, football schools, etc’.
Q: How many Academies operate in Canada?
A: There are a number of private entities offering football (soccer) training across Canada in the profit and not-for-profit sectors that portray themselves as Academies. The Canadian Soccer Associations and its Provincial and Territorial Associations is required to determine what constitutes ‘long term training’ and who has the necessary training facilities and infrastructure to determine which qualifies as an academy in this regard.
Q: What is a minor?
A: A player who has not yet reached the age of 18 years.
Q: Why has FIFA introduced this Regulation?
A: FIFA have created a sub-committee for the protection of minors. This sub-committee will be responsible for the examination and approval of every international transfer of a minor and for the first registration of a minor player who is not a national of the country in which he or she wishes to be registered for the first time. Consequently Academies are required to report to the Association all minors who are registered with its establishment.
Q: Does this affect High School, College and University Soccer.
A: No, education establishments are not considered Academies unless it is specifically set up to provide long term training for soccer. Under normal circumstances soccer players are already playing for, and registered with, other soccer programmes.

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