Opposition parties want to hear the QMJHL in parliamentary committee

Opposition parties want to hear the QMJHL in parliamentary committee

The parties opposition want to hear the QMJHL in parliamentary committee

Sean Kilpatrick The Canadian Press QMJHL commissioner Gilles Courteau has yet to comment on the information uncovered in a recent judgment in Ontario.

“Upset” by the “acts of barbarism” reported in a judgment on initiations in junior hockey, the opposition parties in the National Assembly ask to hear the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (LHJMQ) in committee parliamentarian.

Quebec solidaire MNAs Vincent Marissal and Ruba Ghazal on Tuesday sent the Committee on Culture and Education a request for an initiative order “in order to shed light on the state of situation in the league as well as the measures in place to protect young people, curb bullying and abuse and ensure young people can practice their sport in a safe and caring environment.”

If this request, which has the support of the Quebec Liberal Party and the Parti Quebecois, is accepted, both the QMJHL and Hockey Quebec will be summoned.

In a judgment rendered recently in Ontario, some twenty former players of the three Canadian major junior leagues allege physical abuse, sexual violence and intimidation carried out over a period of almost 50 years in the context of initiations into cloakrooms. The plaintiffs, including former QMJHL player Stephen Quirk, lament the “culture of silence” that allegedly reigns within team management and leagues.

“I was outraged to read once again this kind of gesture, this kind of ignominy that we inflict on young people in the name of initiation and esprit de corps, when we are here squarely in the Criminal Code, and we are talking about aggression “, thundered the elected representative Vincent Marissal during a press briefing on Tuesday.

In his view, the QMJHL must be invited at all costs to explain these “initiation rites which are more like acts of barbarism”. “I don't think this is the first time there have been glitches with this league,” he observed.

Interim Liberal Party leader Marc Tanguay is asking for a “culture change”. “This is exceedingly concerning, disturbing. I think Quebec has to find a way to frame [that],” he said. Cut funding to the governing bodies of Quebec hockey, for example? It's a “lever”, added the elected representative of LaFontaine.

On Monday, the federal Minister of Sports, Pascale St-Onge, had asked for the end of initiations in the world of sport. “Initiations like that are abuse, they are mistreatment.

On Tuesday, the leader of the Parti Québécois, Paul St-Pierre Plamondon, wanted to qualify. “We have seen, for example for universities, initiations posed a problem. Does this mean that initiations should be prohibited in universities? he wondered aloud.

More details will follow.