Minor hockey to vote on policy later this month
Rink behaviour policy would enhance game
AMHERST - The Cumberland County Minor Hockey Association will soon be the latest minor hockey group to implement a rink behaviour policy.
Besides isolated incidents, minor hockey president Wayne MacKenzie said behaviour really hasn't been a problem in Cumberland County, but the executive wants to be proactive and have a policy in place for future occurences.
"It hasn't been a major problem here over the years but it's something we want to nip in the bud and have a policy in place should it happen," MacKenzie said Monday.
Studies by Hockey Canada have indicated the number of volunteers in minor hockey has continually declined. Although increasing work and family demands have made spare time rare, many volunteers are staying away because they don't want to put up with the crap that goes along with volunteering.
"Our job is to make the game fun and enjoyable for the kids, but sometimes things get out of control. That's why we're losing volunteers," MacKenzie said.
Both the Halifax Hawks Minor Hockey Association and the Dartmouth Whalers have successfully implemented the policy which covers players, coaches, parents and fans. MacKenzie said his executive has endorsed the policy and now wants input from the membership before voting on it at the annual meeting later this month.
The policy is meant to foster and enhance mutual respect as well as sportsmanship and fair play while promoting safety, fun and good competition.
It will eliminate those behaviours and actions that detract from a positive environment and stresses zero tolerance of any forms of abuse/harassment.
Minor hockey will strike a disciplinary committee to hear all complaints with sanctions ranging from a letter of education or warning to probation or restitution to suspension from minor hockey events or criminal charges.