From the CEO: A New, Better Normal

This story appears in the April edition of US Lacrosse Magazine. Don't get the mag? Join or renew today. Thanks for your support!

After a long and painful interruption, sputtering like a lawnmower pulled from the shed after a long winter, the return of lacrosse is upon us.

It’s been wonderful to see college teams take the field again, but only thanks to extensive and expensive precautions that high school and youth programs cannot afford or manage as effectively. A complete resumption of play at all levels will require patience and thoughtfulness as warm weather arrives and vaccine distribution expands.

The pandemic has magnified and exposed our social and cultural challenges like never before, and it has required us to reimagine, innovate and reconsider what’s most important in our lives. We may long for a return to “normal,” but in doing so we risk the opportunity to lead and support positive change inspired by the invaluable perspective the last year has provided.

One simple but important way that we can introduce positive change in lacrosse is to support and advocate for the “We Stand Initiative” (, which empowers administrators to commit to a more inclusive, welcoming environment within every team, league and tournament.

In partnership with many stakeholders, US Lacrosse has developed an anti-harassment and discrimination policy for leagues and tournaments, cultural competency training for coaches and players and a host of other resources focused on assuring that all young players and their families know they belong in our sport.

Youth sports represent a familiar and comfortable component of “normal” to millions of families, and the impact of a positive youth sports experience on a child’s physical and social development is well-documented. As we experience the joy and pride in watching our children return to the lacrosse field, may we also find the moral courage to advocate for the positive change required to enable every family to experience those same emotions.

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