The VIJHL has suspended play until further notice due to serious concerns regarding the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic. This has not been an easy day for league officials, team owners, general managers, coaches, support staff and players. Although greatly disappointed that the season has been suspended, the VIJHL supports the decision of Hockey Canada. The VIJHL executive would like to take this opportunity to thank the fans, volunteers and community partners for their support this season. The Board would like to recognize the players who have poured their blood, sweat and tears into their dreams; for them this is a difficult day.
Barry Petrachenko, the Chief Executive Officer of BC Hockey, released a statement today. Here is a transcript:
The following is a statement on behalf of Hockey Canada from Tom Renney, Chief Executive Officer, and Scott Smith, President and Chief Operating Officer, on the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
“Without question, this an unprecedented period of difficulty for the sports world. The health and safety of all participants in sport, including players, coaches, staff, officials, fans, family, volunteers and the general public, is of the utmost importance to Hockey Canada.
After much consultation with the Hockey Canada membership, our Chief Medical Officer and public health officials, the Hockey Canada Board of Directors has made the decision to cancel all Hockey Canada-sanctioned activities, including our national championships, until further notice, effective immediately.
We recognize the tremendous effort that has been put forth all year by individuals across the country as they participate in Canada’s game. Although it is difficult to process the hockey season ending abruptly, we feel this is the best course of action in order to do our part in keeping our country safe.”
BC HOCKEY STATEMENT
“The BC Hockey Board of Directors support the leadership shown by Hockey Canada to suspend all hockey operations in an attempt to curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus and will be following the direction to suspend all BC Hockey games and events until further notice.
The health and safety of our players, their families and their communities is our utmost priority. This is a developing situation which we will continue to monitor closely along with Hockey Canada and the appropriate public health authorities. We will provide further information to our membership as soon as it is made available.
We recognize the impact this situation has on our families and participants, and we thank our entire BC Hockey community for their patience and understanding through this difficult time.”
Barry Petrachenko – Chief Executive Officer, BC Hockey
The VIJHL will provide updates when they become available.