'Really disappointing': Sask. Hockey 'taking action' after video shows team failing to physically distance
REGINA -- The Saskatchewan Hockey Association is looking into the details surrounding a video shared to social media that appears to show a team failing to follow the province’s public health measures.
The Estevan Tower Wolves U18 hockey team is sanctioned by Sask. Hockey, and appeared, along with a referee, in a Facebook live broadcast apparently failing to follow public health guidelines.
“Physical distancing must be observed at all times with a minimum of two metres of space between individuals and spectator groups from different households,” the government’s public health order for sports and activities reads.
According to the government’s website, it is the responsibility of each team and facility to establish a plan for how to implement and maintain the public health order.
CTV News contacted two team administrators about the videos that show the team apparently breaking the public health order. They both refused to comment.
Sask. Hockey said it is taking action against the team.
“It’s violating the public health order because it’s supposed to be individual skills and training that’s on the ice and there’s not supposed to be any competition at all. Clearly when you see the start of the video and you see a referee dropping the puck, obviously there’s no social distancing, there’s nothing going on so this is complete violation of the public health order,” Kelly McClintock, General Manager of the Saskatchewan Hockey League said.
The public health order also said team benches and bleachers must be set up in a way that respects distancing requirements. Spectators are recommended to only sit in every other row.
One person is to be responsible for ensuring the compliance of these guidelines, the province says.
“Staff should discourage gathering,” the province's public health order reads.
The video also appears to show a game in progress, which is also against the law created by the current public health order.
“I’ve reported it to the provincial government and asked them to take whatever action they need to. This is giving hockey a bad light,” McClintock said.
The video has since been deleted.
Saskatchewan’s Premier Scott Moe said he isn’t aware of the video, but says it will be dealt with in the appropriate manner.
“That would be disappointing if any organization is operating outside of the public health measures that we have in place in particular given just how close we are to finding our way through this pandemic with increased access to vaccines,” Moe said.