Hockey Canada facing backlash for survey on sexual assault allegations
Participants asked about idea that media criticism of organization is ‘overblown’
A recent survey distributed by Hockey Canada has left some shaking their heads over what they see as out-of-touch questions about the organization's handling of sexual assault allegations.
The survey, which CBC News has seen, was distributed to parents, volunteers and coaches, seeking to gauge opinions on the sport's national body.
It has been under intense scrutiny since news broke this spring of an alleged sexual assault following a 2018 gala in London, Ont., involving eight unidentified players — including members of that year's world junior team — and the subsequent settlement.
Allegations of another gang sexual assault involving the 2003 world junior team emerged in July. None of the allegations has been proven in court.
Participants were asked to rate their level of agreement with several statements, among them:
- "The level of criticism by the media toward Hockey Canada is overblown."
- "Incidents such as this are unlikely to happen again."
- "The allegations are only about a few hockey players and are not representative of the culture of hockey in this country."
They were also asked to weigh in on how important is it for Hockey Canada, while it works "to address systemic issues in hockey," to "discontinue the use of membership fees to cover uninsured sexual misconduct claims."
Hockey Canada told a parliamentary committee it took most of its settlement money from its National Equity Fund, which is funded in part by minor hockey league registration fees — a fact that has sparked public outrage.
The organization said in July it would no longer use the fund to settle such claims.