Updated: October 09, 2020 05:25 PM
Created: October 09, 2020 02:58 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- More than 100 students and parents rallied Friday to protest the governor's decision to not allow youth sports to proceed in the fall.
Wearing their school's team colors, the group walked around Albuquerque Academy chanting "let us play."
"We want to get the message out that these kids are working hard based on what the governor’s asked them to do," said Scott Thoms, who is a parent of two student-athletes at Rio Rancho High School. "They said go to school, get good grades, practice your social distancing, practice your sports safely, and they’re doing all those things and then getting undermined by the governor and her decision.”
Scott's wife said she is baffled by the governor's decision to not amend the public health order to allow youth athletes to compete.
"Our son is a senior. It’s done for him. The season’s done," Holly said. "And he’s one of the top runners for Rio Rancho High School.”
The governor was sympathetic Thursday when she made her announcement. But she said it's not safe for fall competition due to the rising number of COVID-19 cases in New Mexico.
"I am very sorry for that disappointment, but I do want to take us back to, to protect the spread of COVID-19," the governor said.
The New Mexico Activities Association was hoping to resume volleyball, golf and cross country during the fall. But the association is being forced to move the three sports to 2021 with other sports.
In response to the protest Friday, the governor's office issued the following statement:
The state of New Mexico recognizes the importance of youth activities and how meaningful sports and after-school programs are for students and student-athletes statewide. The pandemic, and the state's worsening health conditions, unfortunately preclude a lot of what we all want to do right now.
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