Scandals inside Hockey Canada will not forestall Halifax and Moncton from internet hosting the world junior hockey championship later this yr, says the Halifax Regional Council.
“We’re gonna go forward and put these video games — put this tournament on, we’re gonna do a hell of a job as we at all times do,” Mayor Mike Savage informed a particular council assembly late Tuesday, including a notice of warning that “final minute issues are at all times doable.”
Hockey Canada has been rocked by allegations of sexual assault, which led to its management — CEO Scott Smith and your complete board of administrators — stepping down Tuesday amid blistering criticism. Savage stated final week that significant change was wanted at Hockey Canada earlier than the tournament may happen.
The nationwide sports activities group has been underneath hearth since May, when it was revealed a settlement had been paid to a girl who alleged she was sexually assaulted by eight gamers — together with members of Canada’s males’s world junior crew in 2018.
Allegations of gang sexual assault involving the 2003 world junior crew emerged in July.
In an interview Wednesday, the Halifax mayor stated the world juniors would be the first main tournament for the reason that home cleansing at Hockey Canada.
“I feel we have seen significant change,” stated Savage. “We do not know the entire story but. We do not know who’ll be on the board. We do not know who would be the CEO however I feel it is a actually essential step. And I do not assume there’s any denying that it is a dramatic change and I feel it is for one of the best.”
Savage stated a “excessive quantity” of tickets have been bought for the tournament, which is scheduled to happen in December and January. The remaining tickets, he stated stay with Hockey Canada “for issues like potential sponsors.”
“I feel it is honest to say that the (International Ice Hockey Federation) doesn’t need to cancel or transfer the tournament this yr,” he stated.
“They’ve made a dedication to that. Their desire is to have this tournament. They know that Halifax can do that. They know that Moncton can try this. Can’t foresee the unforeseeable.”
It is the second time that Canada will host the world junior hockey championship inside a span of 4 months.
The elite under-20 tournament will return to Atlantic Canada for the primary time in 20 years. Halifax and Sydney, N.S., co-hosted the tournament in 2003.
The International Ice Hockey Federation wanted to discover a new location for upcoming occasion after stripping Russia of internet hosting privileges due to the continuing warfare in Ukraine.
Halifax Coun. Tony Mancini stated the video games will deliver a $50 million financial increase to the 2 cities with $35 million of it being in Nova Scotia.
The 2023 championship will kick off Dec. 26, just some months after the 2022 version, received by Canada, wrapped up in Edmonton. The tournament will run till Jan. 5, 2013.
A lot of councillors voiced their help for adjustments at Hockey Canada however added that there wants to be extra scrutiny.
Coun. Lisa Blackburn stated Hockey Canada is in want of full systemic change.
“Through their actions, they’ve taught these boys who are actually males that it is OK to use girls any means they need, they usually’ll be supported,” she stated.
“They’ve taught these boys by their actions … that it is OK to cowl up that wrongdoing and bury it from scrutiny.”
When the group was given the chance for transparency at a parliamentary listening to, Blackburn stated Hockey Canada as a substitute selected to current themselves as “conceited, tone deaf and their testimony reeked of hubris.”
While the City of Halifax had a very good relationship with Hockey Canada, Savage stated the way through which the allegations have been dealt with was unacceptable and lacked accountability.
This report by The Canadian Press was first revealed Oct. 12, 2022.