I have raised three sons in Pacifica and am a proud sports mom and concerned parent who along with almost 45,000 other concerned parents and coaches, want to see our kids play competitive sports this spring. The group of 45,000 is very well organized and called “LetThemPlayCA” and is growing by the day.

We definitely want the kids to play. You were incorrect in stating the contrary in your editorial in the Jan. 20 issue of the Tribune. This group has been tracking why it is safe for California youth to return to competitive play. Despite the COVID-19 ravaging California, youth are not the superspreaders. We do have testing protocol and strict safely guidelines in place currently across the state with youth practicing and conditioning each week. This group is not made up of “angry coaches” and what hesitance at the LetThemPlay rally did you see?

Also, this group has never taken a public stand against Gov. Newsom or said this was his fault. We simply want to have an audience to speak with him about our data and to respectfully ask for the wrongly assigned color-coded tier system for the opening of competitive youth play to be re-evaluated. The current tier system is disconnected from real data that has been collected in our state from coaches that have been safely conducting youth practices and conditioning since the middle of 2020.

It is incredibly frustrating to our group that over 40 states conducted youth athletic competitions in 2020 during the pandemic. These states have proven that youth play can exist safely during these difficult times. Given the opportunity, youth sports teams in California can take the data from these states and duplicate the success.

The biggest concern with this ban on youth sports in California is the negative mental health impact it is having on our youth. More than 3 million kids from T-ball, youth soccer to high school sports have been benched since last March. California children should be considered “essential business” and the impact of this extended ban is critical.

Kristin Mauer

Pacifica

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