Tri-Port Minor Hockey has made it clear this season it is not going to be putting up with any abuse of volunteers, coaches, managers or officials over COVID-19 restrictions and vaccine passports.
ViaSport has directed that if there are over 50 spectators at a hockey event, vaccine passports must be checked. On Oct. 8, the Vancouver Island Amateur Hockey Association voted to implement a further requirement that all volunteers must be double vaccinated by Nov. 22.
With the start of the minor hockey season currently underway, Port Hardy Minor Hockey president Nicki Ranger posted on social media that she has been disappointed to see several people showing up to the rink and being argumentative and not wanting to follow the vaccine passport rules.
“Simply put: If you are not prepared to wear a mask, and show your vaccine passport when asked, please do not attend.”
“Tri-Port Minor Hockey will uphold these requirements to ensure that our youth are able to play hockey and enjoy a season with a proper game schedule and the closest to ‘normal’ play possible,” the organization said in a statement. “This will mean that some parents are not able to be in attendance due to an inability to receive their vaccinations or by personal choice. While these choices will be respected, we will be unable to bend any rules unless a medical exemption is able to be obtained.”
The organization added any abuse directed towards volunteers, coaches, managers or officials will not be tolerated.
“Any abuse of volunteers will result in a one month ban from both local arenas for the first offence, followed by a full ban [for the entire season] of both arenas for a second offence. We cannot run these youth sports without volunteers stepping up to make it possible, and there is no excuse to take frustrations out on these people.”
Ranger posted on social media she wants everyone to work together to “be the best supporters and fans of our teams! We are all here to support our players on the ice!”