OCC men’s water polo standing with the hashtag #LetUsPlay

OCC water polo player Arnaud Parmentier pleaded to Gov. Gavin Newsom to allow athletics with an Instagram post and the hashtag #LetUsPlay. 

Members of the Orange Coast College men’s water polo team have posted pictures on social media to urge California’s Governor Gavin Newsom in helping student athletes resume competition. 

The #LetUsPlay movement believes that the California Governor has the ability and resources to help athletes at all levels by establishing a testing system that would prevent COVID-19 breakouts in groups.

The new youth sports guidelines are encouraging for other sport entities such as the OCC’s sports team. The guidelines stipulate that activities can resume in counties where COVID-19 cases rates are at or below 14 people per 100,000.

“I really believe that the return of youth sports is a sign of hope for us,” said Felipe Rocha, OCC water polo player and Brasilian international student.

While all of OCC’s competitions were cancelled for the fall, sports were supposed to resume in the spring, but that opportunity has not presented itself, leaving athletes still questioning whether or not they will be able to compete. 

“All we are asking is to be able to play and compete again. Everyone is grateful to be back in this incredible facility, but practicing without competing is hard,” said Arnaud Parmentier, OCC water polo player and Belgian international student “You have to keep your focus and your motivation high even if you know that all the work you put in might be wasted.” 

On the other hand, universities like USC were able to start their athletics program on time thanks to Pop Testing 3.0. These tests are PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) with results in less than 24 hours. Keck Medicine of USC Clinical Laboratories is providing the laboratory services for this program.

Players and coaches remain hopeful that the actions of the #LetUsPlay movement will reach Newsom’s office. The #LetUsPlay movement has amassed over 13,000 hashtags on Instagram

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