Positive Coaching Alliance to Partner with U.S. Soccer Federation to Develop Positive Soccer Environments Module as part of U.S. Soccer’s New Safe Soccer Clearance Program

PCA is proud to announce its partnership with the U.S. Soccer Federation to co-develop a 30-minute Positive Soccer Environments online module that will be part of the Federation’s newly created Safe Soccer Clearance Program. The program is a key safeguarding initiative stemming from the Sally Q. Yates’s independent investigation and supported by U.S. Soccer’s Yates Implementation Board Committee and Participant Safety Taskforce.

The Positive Soccer Environments module will provide coaches, referees, team administrators, parents, and other leaders across the soccer landscape with standardized education on identifying a positive soccer environment, the benefits of creating a positive setting, and tangible tools to nurture a healthy team environment.

Mana Shim, Chair of U.S. Soccer’s Participant Safety Taskforce, stated: “PCA has been the preeminent leader in this space for over two decades and their research-based trainings and tools have been proven to work. As we continue to take steps to change the culture of soccer in this country from the ground up, we’re excited to draw on PCA’s expertise in putting athlete well-being at the center of youth sports. Safety remains our top priority and we look forward to rolling out our Safe Soccer Clearance Program and continuing to work with our membership and partners as we define new standards, policies, reporting systems and educational programs.”

PCA President Jason Sacks, member of the Participant Safety Taskforce, stated: “PCA is looking forward to partnering with U.S. Soccer to provide specific, tangible tips and tools to not only coaches, but parents, leaders, officials and athletes.”

In addition to the Positive Soccer Environments Module, the Safe Soccer Clearance program will provide education on abuse prevention, responding to emergency situations that relate to physical health, and diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. The program will be a multi-year roll out with the initial pilot phase targeting the Fall of 2023 before being introduced to the broader soccer landscape in 2024.

In addition to this co-developed 30-minute module, PCA will continue to partner at the grassroots level with soccer clubs, high schools, parks and rec programs, among others across the United States to ensure that all kids have access to a positive, equitable and inclusive sports experience.

“There is no need to wait, youth soccer organizations should look into partnering with PCA now to help build positive cultures with athlete’s well-being at the center,” stated US Soccer Director of Strategy, Emily Cosler.

To learn more about partnering your soccer organization with PCA, whether competitive, recreational or anywhere in between, visit: https://positivecoach.org/what-does-it-mean-to-partner-with-pca/

About U.S. Soccer’s Safe Soccer Clearance Program

U.S. Soccer’s Safe Soccer Clearance Program will redefine the processes and criteria used to determine eligibility to participate in soccer in the United States by creating a thorough, continuous vetting system that will simultaneously prohibit bad actors from participating in our sport while identifying high-quality individuals. This will transform U.S. Soccer’s approach from simply “red-lighting” bad actors after an incident has happened, to “green-lighting” them before they begin participating in the sport, which will prevent potentially bad actors from ever having a role in soccer. The program will include safety training, annual verification of background and contact information and background checks.

To learn more about the Safe Soccer Clearance program, visit the U.S. Soccer Participant Safety Hub: https://www.ussoccer.com/participant-safety-hub

About Positive Coaching Alliance

PCA’s mission is to change the culture of youth sports so that every child, regardless of social or economic circumstance, has access to a positive youth sports experience. PCA trains coaches and partners with youth sports organizations, parents, sports leaders, and communities to make youth sports more positive, equitable, and accessible to all kids regardless of social or economic circumstances. For more information, go to www.positivecoach.org