A letter sent to membership of the Ridge Meadows Minor Ball Hockey Association was a reminder of the league’s zero-tolerance policy for racial discrimination – and not directed at any specific case.
That’s what the association told The News after being asked about a letter recently circulated to its membership.
The letter was sent out shortly after allegations were made in another local sport. The U11 Ridge Meadows Minor (ice) Hockey team was accused of hurling racial slurs at a Surrey team during a February tournament.
In a statement about racial discrimination, signed by the ball hockey league executive – the Ridge Meadows Renegades – they acknowledged that they have looked into “unofficial” reports in the past, but in all of the circumstances “the allegations are not how they were initially presented,” said the executive.
“RMMBHA has a ZERO tolerance for any racial discrimination against our own players or any of our opponents,” the local ball hockey association added.
The statement said that in all game situations they rely heavily on referees to hear and report things that may be said on the game surface during game situations. And, they have received no official reports from any referees or officials of racial slurs hurled at games so far this season.
“We take allegations of race-related slurs or any derogatory sexual orientation/gender based discrimination VERY seriously and investigate all matters with care and sensitivity, following a due process. If other associations are involved, we work with them to investigate such matters,” noted the executive of the ball hockey association.
“It would not be prudent for us to comment further at this time,” they added.
An accusation that a U11 Ridge Meadows ice hockey association team used racial slurs against a Surrey team during a tournament in Coquitlam led to the Surrey coach being suspended for 30 days after he pulled his team from the ice.
Following his suspension the coach was then dismissed from his coaching duties with the league. However, the Surrey Minor Hockey Association claims this decision had nothing to do with the events that happened on the ice during the game in question.
A release dated May 2 from the Laura Ballance Media Group, said the opposing team repeatedly used racial slurs against players on the Surrey team, noting that the team has 15 South Asian players on it. It went on to say that the the 10-year-olds were called “monkey,” “banana” and the N-word by numerous players.
However, president of the Ridge Meadows association, Nick Davis, stands by his team, saying the whole thing was a misunderstanding.
“We deny allegations that our nine and 10 year old children used racial slurs, or knowingly made comments that could be inferred as racist, to or about the opposing team,” he wrote in a letter to The News.
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