COVID-19 Plan for Safe Trials

The following is the Plan for Safe Trials as developed by the GSSCC Board of Directors to create guidelines for conducting trials.
Purpose: Create healthy and safe trial environment during COVID restrictions.
Object: Provide a detailed plan with responsibilities for all GSSCC members to follow.
Restrictions: Government in the Province/Region where the trial will be held must allow outside gatherings of at least 50 people and allow low/minimum contact sports. If restrictions oppose this, then no trial will be allowed.
Overview:
  • People must follow the social distance (2 metres) or wear a mask/face shield
  • When reporting in and out maintain the 2 metre distance
  • Articles are not handed over to the judge or track layer
  • Handlers can use their own dumbbell(s)
  • Handler will not turn over the stick to the judge
  • Handler can wear a glove when they receive the stick from the helper and either give it back to the helper or lay it on the ground after they report out
  • Handler MUST wash their hands after every critique and before trialing in each phase
Committee/Club Responsibilities:
  • Ensure no more than the maximum number of people allowed by the province are in attendance including all officials, handlers etc..
  • The club must ensure everyone follows the social distance rule and/or wear a proper mask and/or face shield
  • They will not sell food or drinks
  • They must have washroom facilities where social distancing can be adhered to
  • They must have hand cleaning stations and ample hand sanitizer at the tracking field and field for obedience and protection
  • They must have a supply of proper masks and/or face shields for all volunteers working the trial.
  • Ensure the trial manager receives dumbbells from the handler and that the handler has their name on them.
Judge Responsibilities:
  • It is up to the judge if they want to attend the trial (i.e. flying, staying at a hotel etc..)
  • Must follow local government restrictions if in place (i.e. 14-day quarantine)
  • Must follow the social distance rule or wear a mask/or face shield
  • Will not require the handler to report in or out within 2 metres
  • Will not take the stick from the handler to give to the helper, the handler will either give it back to the helper or lay it on the ground after reporting out
  • Will not take the found articles from the handler, will just observe them
  • When completing the trial summary sheet wear a mask and/or face shield
Trial Manager Responsibilities:
  • Must follow the social distance rule or wear a mask and/or face shield
  • Ensure the committee responsibilities as previously detailed are met
  • When giving the trial paperwork to the judge and when completing the trial summary sheet, wear a mask and/or face shield
  • Will receive the handler’s dumbbells and ensure they are properly marked with the handler’s name OR
  • If a handler does NOT have their own dumbbell the club must ensure the dumbbells are properly cleaned/ disinfected after each use.
Handler Responsibilities:
  • Must follow the social distance rule or wear a mask and/or face shield
  • Must wear a mask and/or face shield when within 2 metres of the helper, such as picking up the dog at the helper, disarming the helper, side transport, etc..
  • A mask or face shield would NOT be required for exercises where no one is within 2 metres of the handler, example such as the blind search
  • Must wash hands before reporting in and after the critique.
  • Before the trial begins if the handler has their own dumbbells (all levels) they can use them. Ensure they are marked with the handler’s name and given to the trial manager. If they do not have their own dumbbells the club must provide disinfected dumbbells.
Helper Responsibilities:
  • Will bring their own water or if its provided by the club the outside of the bottles will be disinfected
  • Can wear a mask and/or face shield if they wish but not mandatory
  • No spitting anywhere
  • Can wear a glove as per trial rules
Special restrictions for each phase
Tracking:
Everyone must maintain a distance of 2 metres from each other or wear a mask and/or face shield (when measuring tracking lines, when temperament tests are being done etc..
Tracklayer will scent articles as per rules but wash their hands and sanitize after laying the tracks
The handler will keep the articles after the track and just show them to the judge
The handler will place the found articles in a bag separate from other equipment and then wash/sterilize their hands
Obedience:
The handler can use their own dumbbells
Everyone must maintain a distance of 2 metres from each other or wear a mask and/or face shield (when temperament tests are being done etc…)
The handler will report in and out no closer than 2 metres from the judge
The group must maintain a distance of 2 metres from each other or all wear a mask and/or face shield
Protection:
The handler will report in and out no closer than 2 metres from the judge
When the handler picks up the dog from the helper and completes the exercise disarming the helper and side transport they will wear a mask and/or face shield
A mask or face shield would not be required for exercises where no one is within 2 metres of the handler, such as the blind search
The handler can wear a glove when they receive the stick from the helper and either give it back to the helper or lay it on the ground after they report out
The helper can wear a glove as per trial rules
Closing Ceremonies:
All awards must be disinfected and placed on an awards table prior to ceremony and handler will approach individually to receive any award. Everyone must maintain a distance of 2 metres from each other or wear a mask and/or face shield.

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