Sexual violence in hockey Canada | Former sports minister says change is impossible with the same leader

(Toronto) As a former gymnast who saw the dark side of sport, Kirsty Duncan’s mission was to eradicate abuse in Canadian sport.

Posted on July 29

Lori Ewing
canadian press

M.myself Duncan, who served as federal minister of sports from 2015 to 2019, is upset that Hockey Canada or Sports Canada have not informed him of the sexual assault allegations against members of his junior hockey team in 2018.

She added that Hockey Canada doesn’t have the confidence to clean up its sport, especially if the same people continue to helm the organization.

“If you look at hockey, they’ve been failing for 30 years,” the former minister said. I would like to ask about your efforts. Then we learn a lot.The turning point must have been after Sheldon Kennedy [qui a été victime d’abus par l’entraîneur Graham James au niveau junior]»

“Has Hockey Canada changed? The answer is no. I think they played on the edge. They did things here and there. Why is this time different, especially if the major groups are the same? »

M.myself Duncan told the Canadian Press a day after publishing the open letter. earth and mail About the crisis in hockey and Canadian sports. There was still emotion in his voice.

She writes about her experience in a sport that has risen to the spotlight, as more than 500 gymnasts across Canada seek independent research into their sport.

“I personally know what it’s like to be told to eat jellies, laxatives and toilet paper to keep my weight under control and to be repeatedly verbally abused by coaches, judges and parents.” M.myself Duncan.

“Let’s talk about the judge,” she added in a phone interview Friday. I competed in a local competition. Local! At the club level. ‘s daughter is good, but she has a big butt.” I must have been 11 or 12 years old. »

M.myself Etobicoke North MLA Duncan remembered dedicating most of his life to the sport and after finishing his sporting career he became a coach and judge to protect the next generation.

“I did everything in my power to make the sport safe,” she said.

When she wanted to develop a sports safety programme, including 13 sports safety summits across the country, the creation of a universal code of conduct, a helpline, a panel of experts on the subject, and a research center on gender equality, many I said I faced an obstacle. .

She now believes that all sports need to enter a period of reflection.

“Everyone has a role to play in this. Everyone has to do their part,” she said.

“It’s heartbreaking,” said M.myself Duncan. Schools have an obligation to report incidents. It doesn’t exist in sports. […] I can’t close my eyes. I can’t say I’ve seen or heard of it. Are you going to tell me no one in Hockey Canada hasn’t seen a pattern in all these years? »

M.myself Duncan, who has served as Minister of Sports Science, said the federal government must have the necessary funding and a large specialized department to make sports a priority.

“Because we are talking about young people, about the future of the country, we have to get off to the best possible start,” she said.