OWHA COVID-19 UPDATE, News (Woodstock Wildcats)

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Submitted By Kim Bailey on Wednesday, June 3, 2020
OWHA Bulletin May 29, 2020

Today, Ontario’s Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries has provided some clarification on the Tuesday, May 19 announcement about easing the restrictions on sport activities.

It is important to note that Hockey Canada and the Ontario Women’s Hockey Association are not operating any hockey activities at this time.

We support the Province’s encouragement for the public to continue to adhere to public health measures, including practising physical distancing or wearing a face covering when physical distancing is difficult or not possible and regular handwashing and staying home when ill.

While hockey may not be operating in the Province yet, the various organizations are working on a phased approach that will enable a return to hockey. We have been working in conjunction with guidance from Public Health, the Government of Ontario and Hockey Canada to develop a Return to Hockey plan that will promote the health and safety of all stakeholders in the game.

National sport organizations, provincial sport organizations, and professional sport leagues must establish rules and policies that will enable the safe return to sport before their sport resumes. As these are developed, information will be shared with the various organizations throughout Ontario that will enable us to work together to provide hockey activities in a safe and positive environment.

As Ontario gradually reopens, it is more important than ever to follow public health advice. The government will proceed cautiously and in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health.

In June 2020 (date to be confirmed and information distributed), OWHA Associations and teams may pre-register participants for the 2020-2021 season, taking into consideration the fact that participation in hockey for the coming season may or may not take place and, if it does take place, it will likely be in a very different format. Registration can only be done without the collection of fees for the 2020-2021 season.

Any OWHA association/team that has previously Registered Players for the 2020-2021 season must return the total registration fees that have been collected.

The OWHA and their Members are encouraged by the recent announcements from the Provincial government. We will continue to put in place measures to best assist all stakeholders in the safe return to hockey for our players, in partnership with the Ontario Government and Hockey Canada.

The OWHA is NOT sanctioning tournaments at this time, nor approving team travel to tournaments outside the province. No tournament can accept registration or payment for a tournament for the 2020-2021 hockey season. No OWHA team may register for tournaments inside or outside Ontario. Any tournament that has already collected/accepted registration/payment from a team needs to notify the teams and return payment.

Further information will be provided as it becomes available.
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