Shaw calls on footballers to steer clear of crime
Given the country's crime problems and recent spike in murders, president of the Kingston and St Andrew Football Association (KSAFA) Wayne Shaw has appealed to footballers within his confederation to stay away from crime and violence.
KSAFA is the biggest confederation in Jamaica's football with 35 current registered clubs and more than 6,000 players.
According to the latest statistics released by the police, Jamaica recorded 991 murders, 843 involving the use of a gun, between January 1 and September 11, a 10 per cent increase year-on-year,
"I want to encourage them to stay out of trouble and to do things that are positive," said Shaw. "Football will soon return. I don't want to be getting news that footballers are getting into trouble with anything that will ruin their football careers. I also want to say to them be patient with us because football will soon be back in Jamaica and not just in Kingston and St Andrew but for the entire country."
KSAFA football competitions have been absent for the past 21 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic and Shaw pointed out that he is encouraging all players to get vaccinated because this will lead to a smooth return of the parish competitions next year.
"We understand what is happening with the pandemic and COVID-19 and we have submitted our protocols to the JFF, but at the moment we just have to wait and see," he said.
"As the president of KSAFA, I really don't see us playing any football in 2021 but we are looking forward to action in early 2022," Shaw noted.
Christopher James, director of Barbican FC, said his club has been doing its best to encourage players to stay away from crime and violence during this period of no football activities.
"What I want to say to them is to get involved in something that is proactive and stay away from crime and violence," said James. "Most of these youngsters are easily influenced and so we definitely have to restart youth football in Jamaica because it really helps to keep youths away from crime and violence," he said.
"We are trying to keep some of them (young footballers) active is some sort of a programme but because of the protocols we have to be doing it in small groups," James stated.