OHL says it wants to offer more player training on sexual violence awareness but resources aren’t there


The Ontario Hockey League (OHL) says it would really like to offer more player schooling to enhance understanding and awareness of sexual violence, but the training personnel from exterior stakeholders simply aren’t obtainable, the league’s vice-president instructed CBC News.

However, Ted Baker additionally did not offer any options to requires more training as a part of the OHL Onside program, which started in 2016.

The hockey tradition has been below the microscope after information {that a} Hockey Canada lawsuit settled earlier this yr. It concerned a lady complainant who mentioned she had been sexually assaulted by a number of gamers on the 2018 world junior workforce. The case has since been reopened, and the whole Hockey Canada board of administrators and chief govt officer not too long ago resigned. Since then, different revelations in regards to the reserve fund have emerged.

The OHL Onside program presently is a two-hour workshop, supplied yearly, and examines gender roles, male stereotypes and sexual violence. The program had largely been on maintain in 2020 and 2021 due to pandemic restrictions, but is slated to return this fall.

Some organizations that conduct this system on behalf of the league really feel two hours of training yearly aren’t sufficient

The OHL is requested by facilitators to pay a minimal of $300 yearly per workforce for the two-hour workshop. The league  has 20 groups: 17 in Ontario, two in Michigan and one in Pennsylvania.

OHL is the most important member league within the Canadian Hockey League (CHL). All three members offer sexual violence awareness packages. 

The Western Hockey League (WHL) has its Respect in Hockey Program, which incorporates “consent instructional classes,” a spokesperson mentioned in an emailed assertion. The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) has a variety of elements as a part of its Awareness Program, together with “organized” preventive actions. 

CBC News had requested the CHL in regards to the frequency of each packages, but did not hear again by the point of publication.

Violence prevention training ‘value its worth’

Baker mentioned that for the OHL, providing more training is tough due to the “resources which can be found” to the skin organizations that facilitate the classes delivered by the Ontario Coalition of Rape Crisis Centres (OCRCC). Some centres with the OCRCC conduct the OHL workshops for native hockey golf equipment. 

“It’s evident in talking to representatives of the OCRCC that they do not have loads of man or lady energy — individual energy — inside their organizations,” Baker mentioned. 

“They are lean and imply, they do an excellent job, but it’s not like they’ve — most likely ‘human resources’ is one of the best ways of claiming it — so as to have ongoing displays, dialogue, and so forth., and so forth.,” he instructed CBC. 

Nicole Pietsch, an advocate and author with the Ontario Coalition of Rape Crisis Centres, says centres are skinny on resources, but funding may treatment that downside. (Submitted by Nicole Pietsch)

Nicole Pietsch, an advocate and author with OCRCC, confirmed that resources are stretched too skinny for the sexual assault centres of their community to present more training throughout the board, but added that if more funds have been made obtainable, further personnel might be employed. 

“Certainly having the resources would make a distinction,” Pietsch mentioned, suggesting the league may discover the cash, if it was really motivated. 

“I might think about that hockey leagues federally and provincially most likely pay for plenty of different issues, proper? — whether or not it’s training or certifications, or whether or not it’s tools, or whether or not it’s their very own workers and personnel,” Pietsch mentioned.

“And so, that is a part of what valuing sexual violence prevention is about is figuring out that it’s value its worth.”

OHL wants to preserve Onside program unified: VP

Jacob Pries, who runs the OHL Onside program for the Kitchener Rangers on behalf of the Sexual Assault Support Centre of Waterloo Region, mentioned resources aren’t a problem for his group — if the workforce wished more, he may present them, but presently, that is not occurring. 

“From our finish, we may completely run more training,” he mentioned. “That actually is what our workforce is right here to do: to prepare people in the neighborhood. The price for us to run a training like that with the Kitchener Rangers, in my view, is pretty minimal.”

Jacob Pries, who helps facilitate the OHL Onside program for the Kitchener Rangers, believes more sexual assault awareness training is required. (Submitted by Jacob Pries)

He acknowledged this is not the case for different sexual assault centres throughout the province. 

“We’re one of many few communities within the province which have educators that work particularly with males,” he mentioned.

His group has been working with different workshop suppliers in different cities the place that is the case, Pries mentioned.

“I used to be chatting with [the centre in Sudbury] a couple of weeks in the past about supporting their centre to prepare their native OHL workforce as a result of they do not presently have a male-identified public schooling workers. And we all know these trainings work quite a bit higher when it’s males speaking to the boys of their room.”

Pries mentioned the person gamers, and hockey tradition as an entire, each lose out by not increasing the workshops past the naked minimal.

“This could be like hockey gamers solely having a two-hour training on skating of their lifetime after which anticipating them to give you the chance to play hockey at an elite degree.”

The OHL mentioned it is open to native centres providing more help to groups if they’ve the personnel, but except the resources are there, they do not need to commit to formal training throughout the board for each workforce.

The league wants to preserve this system unified, mentioned Baker.


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