The South Wales Football Association has decided to follow the practice of the North East Wales FA and several English Counties in introducing yellow armbands for referees who are under the age of 18. The aim is to make players, coaches and spectators aware that the referee themselves is still a minor. The scheme has the support of the FAW Referees’ Committee
The armbands are designed to identify younger referees and ensure that they are supported. We hope that the armbands will remind everyone involved in grassroots football that the referee is a young person who is still developing as a referee and to refrain from making comments which may leave a young referee feeling intimidated, threatened or in some cases abused.
We will be providing every U18 Referee with a yellow armband which must be worn at all times when officiating in games under the Association or local league jurisdiction.
The aim of the armbands is to make people think before they speak. Referees have a challenging but rewarding job and it important that we support all referees especially those under the age of 18.
We have had a number of cases where young referees have been subject to insulting, offensive and abusive language and we are looking to put a stop to it.
Aimed at supporting young match officials, the new initiative will see yellow armbands introduced for all referees under the age of 18 in football to remind everyone that the referee is still subject to the safeguarding legislation – and should therefore be protected, encouraged and treated with respect.
Essentially, the armbands are to remind adults that the match official is still a minor, learning to be the best official they can be. Let’s remember, they are there because they enjoy being involved in football, it’s their game too as well as the players.
Armbands will be sent to all registered referees under the age of 18 within the next seven to ten days and the scheme will begin immediately.