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The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA), the organization that governs interscholastic athletics in Massachusetts, has approved a policy to conduct background checks for all referees and umpires, beginning in the fall of 2015. The MIAA has indicated that the plan, which may be amended further, would require all 8,000 officials and umpires to go through an extensive screening process by the spring of 2016.

Requirements of the new initiative include:

  • An official who is charged with a crime while working in the system may be suspended immediately until the case is resolved;
  • An official who is suspended or disqualified may appeal twice to separate MIAA review panels; and
  • Officials will be rescreened every five years.

State law (MGL c.71, s.38R) already requires school employees and volunteers who may have unsupervised, direct access to students to be screened for a criminal record.

According to the MIAA Game Officials Newsletter, more information will be sent to all officials in the coming months.

Visit our page Massachusetts Law about Criminal Records for additional information on criminal background checks and records.

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