The U.S. Soccer board of directors conducted its first quarterly meeting of the year on Thursday.
The meeting was held virtually and streamed live to the general public.
The public meeting featured an update on Participant Safety as U.S. Soccer makes progress towards each of the 12 recommendations from Sally Q. Yates’ independent investigation last fall. The federation is working to introduce a Safe Soccer program for every adult in the soccer ecosystem over the next three to five years. The initiative to standardize safeguarding across U.S. Soccer membership will launch to Federation staff and a number of pilot organizations this year.
In addition, proposed amendments have been made to U.S. Soccer’s Professional League Standards to address recommendations from the Yates Report. The proposed Standards now include a “Player Health & Safety” section that require Player Safety Officers, player feedback surveys, annual safeguarding training, timely and transparent investigations, detailed anti-harassment policies and other important safeguarding measures. U.S. Soccer will look to have these amendments approved by the Board of Directors during the Annual General Meeting (“AGM”) on March 16-17, 2023. The Federation is also actively conducting interviews for a Chief Safeguarding Officer to lead the new Office of Participant Safety.
A full public update on Participant Safety will be announced by the end of the month.
BELOW ARE OTHER TOPICS THAT WERE DISCUSSED AND BY THE BOARD IN THE PUBLIC AND EXECUTIVE SESSIONS:
- The Board approved the members for the Membership Advisory Committee, which was created to facilitate collaboration and cooperation with U.S. Soccer’s Membership to help support all of their efforts.
- The Board also approved changes to the Open Cup Committee
- The Yates Implementation Committee of the Board of Directors has worked with U.S. Soccer’s Pro League Standards Taskforce to propose amendments to U.S. Soccer’s Pro League Standards. The proposed updates to the Pro League Standards were developed in collaboration with the professional leagues and would mandate additional safeguarding protections.
- The Board approved an amendment to Policy 212-3 U.S. Soccer Athlete & Participant Safety Policy that broadens the scope of the policy to all organization members and requires members to enforce U.S. Soccer’s Model Prohibited Conduct Policy and Model Minor Athlete Abuse Prevention Policy.
- The Board approved amendments to the U.S. Soccer Prohibited Conduct Policy to mirror the Model Prohibited Conduct Policy and SafeSport Code.
- The Board approved new Board & Staff Expectations as well as a Code of Conduct.
- The Board recommended the nomination of Independent Director Juan Uro for re-election as his three-year term comes to an end this year.
- The Board approved this year’s Innovate to Grow Fund programs to continue innovatively building the sport at the grassroots level. A more detailed public announcement will be made public in the coming months.
The next scheduled Board of Directors meeting will be March 16-17 at the U.S. Soccer Annual General Meeting in San Diego, Calif.