As allegations against Hockey Canada’s World Junior Championship teams continue to make headlines, a sexual assault victim says it is time to change the culture of the sport forever.
Lawyer Greg Gilhooley is the survivor of disgraced Winnipeg minor hockey coach and convicted sex offender Graham James. He told 680 CJOBs the beginning That hockey fans often celebrate the success of sexual assault offenders without knowing about their crimes.
“These things are part of the culture, you know?
“If you’re a ‘nice guy’ and you stick around and you help out with the game, all sins are forgiven,” Gilhooli said. “And it has to stop.”
News broke in May about sexual assault allegations involving eight unnamed players in 2018 – including members of that year’s world junior team.
The sport’s national governing body has been under even more intense scrutiny since similar allegations involving unidentified members of the 2003 junior team.
Some veterans of the 2003 silver medal-winning team, including Churchill, Mann-born Jordin Tutu, have said they were surprised to hear that some of their teammates were accused of engaging in sexual assault.
“I don’t remember knowing or hearing about the incident in question during or after the tournament,” said Tutu. said in a statement Posted on social media on Saturday.
“I was shocked when I heard about it in the media and will fully cooperate with any investigation.”
The scandal has reached the highest echelons of Canadian society, with members of parliament and even Prime Minister Justin Trudeau weighing in on the situation. Hockey Canada has halted its funding due to the 2018 allegations.
Gilhooli said he was unfortunately not surprised when such allegations came to the fore.
“I’m always surprised when I hear specific facts and specific teams,” he said. “In concept, I’m not surprised at all, because hockey has a real problem with the culture of hockey.”
Gilhooly said there’s no need to wait for the results of a lengthy investigation for sports to bring about a change in culture – one he says is when the game stops celebrating people who commit this type of behavior.
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