BIRMINGHAM, Ala (WIAT) — The Metro Youth Football League in Birmingham is taking some heat after a few teams have complained of injustice.
Specifically, it has to due with late fines and therefore Metro will not be allowing some teams in the playoffs, who did qualify.
Birmingham Parks and Recreation is now getting involved in this issue with metro youth football and their teams that perform in the league.
Metro is an independent league that is not managed by the city, meaning that parks and recreation cannot technically tell Metro what to do; however, the city does lease their public parks to the teams.
On Thursday, parks and recreation called a special called board meeting after a Metro youth football team, the Central Park Chargers, showed up to Birmingham City Council meeting with complaints.
Central Park said their teams are not being allowed in the playoffs due to late fees.
Metro argued that everyone has to follow the rules, but the Chargers said they tried to pay but were denied.
A similar issued happened with the Adamsville Tigers.
The Adamsville Youth Football President, Eric Nation, told CBS 42 that there was an altercation between parents at a team party in the end of September.
That fight resulted in Metro Youth Football league giving them a $500 fine.
Adamsville appealed the fine but was denied. According to Nation, when they went to pay, they were told they were too late and the boys wouldn’t be allowed in the playoffs.
“It’s frustrating to me because you have adults that are basically holding these kids futures in their hands. The one thing we do is mentor them. We let them know its never ok. It’s never ok to be mistreated. It’s never ok to not do due process,” said Nation.
Former NFL player and Alabama running back Trent Richardson is upset because his son, T.J, plays in the 6-and-under Adamsville team that did qualify for the playoffs.
“It shouldn’t have even gotten this far. It should have been dead and for me, coming from little league, high school, college, professional, I’ve never seen it like this,” said Trent Richardson.
Adamsville received an email from the Metro youth football commissioners that their appeal has now been put in favor of Adamsville, and the boys will play in the playoffs on Saturday.
For the Central Park Chargers, they are still dealing with Metro League not letting them in the playoffs.
The metro youth president and secretary were at Thursday’s meeting and claimed argued that metro has bylaws and Central Park was late on paying.
“I met with parents and coaches. I’ve been accessible to talk and what they want to try to do but I have to abide what goes to me so if commissioners say whatever they say, I have to abide by that. And there is a rule that you don’t may membership fees or whatever by a certain time, your excluded,” said Henry Williams, acting-president of Metro Youth Football League.
“We just want the kids to play in the playoffs to get a chance in what they deserve. They earned the right to play in the playoffs. If we just sit here talking about money which isn’t an issue then we’re not doing our part in helping the kids,” said Josh Myles, with the Central Park Chargers.
Parks and recreation shared their concerns to both parties and that they need to come to a happy medium and in the end, find a way to let the boys play.
“Compromise isn’t a bad thing and I think we got to get both sides to try to work through some of the differences. Understand the rules and regulations of the league but also appealing to the fact that kids should have an opportunity to play so we have to work through some of those issues,” said Councilor William Parker.
The Parks and Rec board and Metro Youth Football League are expected to meet again Friday morning and hopefully find a compromise before the playoffs start on Saturday.
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