Canadian federation funding frozen after rape allegations

Public funding for the Canadian Ice Hockey Federation was suspended by the government on Wednesday after the organization is suspected of trying to hide a gang rape committed by eight players in 2018.

Their handling of the event is extremely troubling and concerning“, declared in front of the journalists the Minister of Sports, Pascale St-Onge, who believes that the federation perpetuates the “culture of silence“.

On Monday, the federation had to come and explain itself to a parliamentary commission after revelations in the press in recent weeks, without convincing the minister.

A few years ago, a financial agreement was reached between the federation and a young woman, now 24, who accuses of gang rape a group of eight players including several members of the national junior team of the time, after a Hockey Canada Foundation Gala in 2018.

For the minister, the leaders of the organization had a reaction “inappropriate” and “from another era“especially since the investigation was not finished and that all the players, whose names we do not know, did not participate.

It imposed several conditions for the resumption of public aid to the federation. Over the past two years, Hockey Canada has received approximately C$14 million (€10.2 million) from the federal government.

To find funding, they are required to send the report of the firm that conducted the independent investigation after the scandal, “with a plan that details how they will implement the recommendations“, explained the minister.

Then they must become signatories to the Office of the Sports Integrity Commissioner, which has just been set up.

In the wake of these allegations, the Minister of Sports had launched a financial audit to find out if “public funds (had) been used to cover up this story of gang rape“.

Hockey Canada’s general manager assured that no government funds were used in this settlement.

According to the alleged victim, several players involved in this case have already played in the National Hockey League, the most prestigious professional ice hockey league in the world.

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