HEO is announcing its new HEO Maltreatment, Bullying and Harassment Protection and Prevention Policy, which is fully aligned with Hockey Canada’s Maltreatment, Bullying and Harassment Protection and Prevention Policy approved by the HC Board in October of 2020. This new Policy complements the introduction of Hockey Canada’s Rule 11 for the 2021-22 season and HC’s associated national reporting system for incidents of discriminatory taunts, insults, and intimidation on the ice and outside of game play.
Hockey Canada and HEO strongly believe that these behaviours do not belong in or around the game of hockey, and HEO is committed to working with and supporting all of its sanctioned organizations to prevent and address inappropriate and unacceptable conduct.
This new HEO Policy 6.3 “HEO Maltreatment, Bullying and Harassment Protection and Prevention Policy” replaces the current HEO Policy 6.3 “Policy and Procedures for Risk, Safety and Conduct Management Hockey Eastern Ontario”. It also works with other HEO policies to address these behaviours in workplace, on- and off-ice settings, as set out in Table 1, below.
Location Policy or Legal AuthorityProtects
|Workplace||Bill 168 Occupational Health and Safety Amendment Act (Violence and Harassment in
the Workplace) 2009; various HEO Personnel Policies.
|HEO Staff and Board Directors; Employees in HEO entities.|
|Off-Ice||HEO Policy 6.3 Maltreatment, Bullying and Harassment Prevention and Protection Policy (also addresses M/B/H provisions of HEO
Policy 6.33 “Codes of Conduct for Directors,
|All Recognized/Registered Participants in and around the game.|
|Coaches, Officials and Players”; does not apply to spectators/observers)|
|Off-Ice||HEO Policy 6.39 Code of Conduct for Parents
HEO Policy 6.44 Spectator Zero Tolerance Policy
|Game Participants, including on-ice and off-ice officials.|
|On-Ice||Hockey Canada Rule 11||Participants in the game.|
What Does This Mean to Me?
In some respects, this new policy simply extends the historical duty to report and investigate allegations of M/B/H. In light of our collective goal to prevent and eliminate these unacceptable behaviours in and around the game, this policy puts a sharp focus on two key duties:
- Duty to Report — any and all M/B/H behaviours, promptly to your District Chair, Junior League Commissioner, Boards of Sledge Hockey of Eastern Ontario (SHEO), the Ottawa Bandits, Ottawa Special Hockey Stars and the Capital City Condors. These individuals will in turn report allegations to HEO within 48 hours of receipt via Total Team Management (TTM). HEO has a similar responsibility to notify Hockey Canada within 48 hours of any M/B/H allegations. TTM is currently being revised to handle off-ice allegations as well as on-ice Rule 11 allegations, and follow-up.
Please note that certain types of M/B/H allegations fall under Ontario’s child protection legislation and must be reported to the appropriate child protection agency. Others may be criminal in nature and must be reported to local police authorities.
- Duty to Investigate — HEO and the District Chairs / Commissioners / Chairs of Boards will confirm which organization will lead the investigation or hearing into the reported
This means that Minor Associations, Minor Leagues and Junior Teams will no longer have decision-making authority on whether an investigation will be conducted and who will conduct it. Districts, Junior Leagues, Associate Member Boards, and HEO/HC will determine which level of administration will look into complaints and allegations.
In some cases, Districts, Junior Leagues, Associate Member Boards and HEO/HC will ask Associations or Teams to take on that responsibility; in others, Districts and Leagues will lead the investigation.
For more serious allegations, HEO or HC will lead the investigation or hearing. HEO’s Standards Committee will host a roster of experienced, independent investigators to assist HEO in conducting these investigations.
Please note that respondents to allegations may be placed under suspension pending the outcome of an investigation or hearing, depending upon the nature of the allegations. Should criminal or civil investigations/litigation commence, HEO and its entities may need to wait for these to conclude prior to beginning hockey investigations or holding hockey hearings. Again, respondents may be placed under suspension for the duration of the criminal or civil investigations.
The outcome of investigations/hearings are to be recorded in a timely manner in TTM, to serve as a record of actions taken and to close the file.
Now is the time for Associations, Teams, Districts, Leagues and Boards to review and revise, where necessary, all procedures for complaint/allegation receipt and reporting, conduct of
investigations and hearings. Resources are available for you to consider and adapt to your liking as you undergo this review.
This policy is effective immediately. HEO knows it can count on all of you, as leaders in our hockey community, to support our efforts to make our game inclusive and respectful.
Please contact Debbie Rambeau, HEO’s Executive Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org should you have any questions regarding this policy or its application.