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'It hurts': Refs quitting as B.C. hockey league penalizes abusive parents

Josh Elliott,
Eight parents are in the penalty box and officials are taking a no-nonsense approach to off-ice misconduct in a B.C. hockey league.
Vancouver Island’s minor hockey association has banned eight parents from attending their kids’ games this weekend, in an effort to protect the league’s referees from ongoing verbal abuse.
The Vancouver Island Amateur Hockey Association imposed the bans after two unrelated incidents last week, making good on an earlier promise to punish misbehaving spectators hurling abuse at on-ice officials.
VIAHA president Jim Humphrey says the abuse is getting out of hand, and referees are beginning to quit rather than endure the constant verbal attacks from parents in the stands.
“In the last seven weeks we’ve probably lost 20 officials already,” Humphrey told CTV Vancouver.


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'Street Ref' program teaches new skills to homeless Ottawa street soccer players

A pair of University of Ottawa first-year commerce students are hoping to take the street soccer phenomenon to the next level.
Wendy Liang and Tanveer Mostafa’s Street Ref program aims to teach the homeless and disadvantaged players from Ottawa’s street soccer team to become certified soccer officials.
The pair hope the program — its formal name is Ottawa Soccer Officials — will lead to paying jobs and impart leadership and financial skills to participants. In January it was awarded a $1,000 grant from Awesome Ottawa.


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