For many Canadians, hockey is more than just a sport – it’s a way of life, it’s our national identity, but most importantly— it brings Canadians together! But for the last nineteen months government officials and public health bureaucrats have imposed heavy-handed restrictions that have mostly to keep us apart.
So when youth sports and hockey in particular came back into action, players and parents alike were thrilled. Until the various hockey leagues across Ontario started to mandate COVID-19 injections for their participants (anyone age twelve and up). The outpour of heartbreaking stories of people being excluded from the good old hockey game filled my inbox.
The first story I covered was of hockey dad Joe Anidjar, who is taking matters into his own hands and organizing protests and satellite structure leagues. I then provided a legal update where one of our lawyers was able to put a legal threat letter out to the Ontario Hockey Federation regarding the efficacy and safety behind this indiscriminate policy.
At the time, it was stipulated that exemptions exist and could be applied for. But with the story that I’m bringing you today, it seems very few and far between that these applications are actually being upheld.
Hockey dad Joe O’Neill had his son's religious exemption denied by the theology police at the greater Toronto hockey league (GTHL). Despite jumping through all of their hoops in a futile attempt to obtain an exemption, Joe even went above and beyond the requirements and provided a letter from his pastor!
His son’s exemption was denied via a form letter, with no justification as to why and his requests for clarification have fallen on deaf ears.
Naturally, I reached out to the GHTL with the following:
1. On what grounds were Joe’s son’s religious exemption denied?
2. What determinants does the GTHL use to decide the validity of someone’s deeply held religious convictions?
3. Given the recent data coming out from Public Health Ontario regarding the myocarditis risk primarily in youth males, has the GTHL conducted a risk assessment to determine if this vaccine policy is proportional to the risk of COVID19?
Yet again, they did not respond.
This is madness. Who gave a hockey league the authority to validate people’s individual believe systems?