The ‘new normal’ for hockey parents in Chilliwack and elsewhere in B.C., watching their kids from outside of the arena due to COVID-19 protocols. (Submitted photo)

The ‘new normal’ for hockey parents in Chilliwack and elsewhere in B.C., watching their kids from outside of the arena due to COVID-19 protocols. (Submitted photo)

Chilliwack hockey parents petition to be let back in the arena

Refused access due to pandemic protocols, parents are now applying pressure to loosen the rules

Chilliwack hockey parents are getting behind a petition to let them back into the rink to watch their children play.

The petition was started a week ago by someone named Jennifer B, and as of Tuesday morning 85 people had signed on.

It targets an edict by the City of Chilliwack, following guidance from the Provincial Health Authority, capping the number of people in a hockey facility at 50. Once two teams are in the building, accompanied by coaches and trainers, there’s little or no capacity left for spectators.

“If we can go in numbers greater than the maximum put forth by the City of Chilliwack to places such as shopping malls and grocery stores we can certainly attend a minor hockey game, practicing mindful distancing and if you choose, to wear a mask,” the petition creator wrote. “It is very funny how we can have a school full of kids, all their teachers under one roof but not a rink full of kids and all their parents under one roof. Simply have the rink staff keep the washrooms disinfected and maintain mindful distance from one another.”

A parallel petition started by someone named Nicole Hicks is aimed at ViaSports, the governing body for amateur sports in B.C.

That one has 3,595 signatures to date.

“I full on ugly cried watching Dryden play his first game of the season on TV,” said Chilliwack hockey parent Consuelo Floystrup, who serves as health and safety officer for her daughter’s team but has to watch her son remotely. “Such mixed emotions! Happy he’s on the ice doing what he loves and grateful we have a hockey league, but heartbroken for all of our hockey community that we can’t be together.”

Floystrup said Chilliwack Minor Hockey parents are a tight-knit group, and she feels all of the local rinks are big enough to accomodate a physical-distancing solution.

She also said there may be medical concerns. Both of her children have type-one diabetes and need their parents near by in case of emergencies.

Other people seem to agree, for various reasons, based on comments attached to both petitions.

“Children thrive knowing their parents are physically present and cheering for them at their sports activites,” wrote Fiona Ehrenholz.

“I understand the need to keep group numbers down, but I’m not sure that just saying 50 across the board for everything is the right answer,” Andrea Deen added. “The size of the location/venue should be considered. An arena seems like it would be plenty big enough for parents to distance.”

“The players and parents are separated by half-inch plexiglass, come on,” Jason Weinberger said. “I feel safer at the rink than at Walmart. The rule should be six feet apart in the stands, end of story.”


@ProgressSports
eric.welsh@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

chilliwackCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A woman wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 uses walking sticks while walking up a hill, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Interior Health reports 83 more COVID-19 infections overnight

46 cases are now associated with a COVID-19 community cluster in Revelstoke

Peter Beckett. ~ File photo
Supreme Court of Canada to decide if it will hear appeal in 2010 wife murder trial

Peter Beckett has stood trial twice for murder in connection with the death of his wife, Laura Letts-Beckett

Revelstoke City Hall. (File)
Revelstoke COVID-19 cases spike to 46

Mayor Gary Sulz expects positive cases to increase

Slocan Valley communities struggling with the need for high-speed internet should consider Kaslo’s model, according to the Kaslo infoNet Society. Photo: Black Press
Follow Kaslo’s lead for fibre service, says proponent

Tim Ryan of Kaslo infoNet Society says bringing high-speed internet to rural homes is possible

A tongue-in-cheek message about wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 on a sign outside a church near Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection count climbs back up to 656

20 more people in hospital, active cases still rising

The Walking Curriculum gets students outside and connecting with nature. (Amanda Peterson/Special to S.F. Examiner)
‘Walking Curriculum’ crafted by SFU professor surges in popularity

The outdoor curriculum encourages students to connect with the natural world

Interior Health said its new toll-free line will help people connect to health-care services. (File)
Interior Health expands toll-free line to improve access to community care

By calling1-800-707-8550, people can be connected to several health-care services

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
B.C. researchers launch study to test kids, young adults for COVID-19 antibodies

Kids and youth can often be asymptomatic carriers of the novel coronavirus

A sign is seen this past summer outside the Yunesit’in Government office west of Williams Lake reminding visitors and members to stay safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (Rebecca Dyok photo)
B.C. First Nation leaders await privacy commissioner decision on COVID-19 information

Release of life-saving data cannot wait, says coalition of First Nations

MLA Jennifer Whiteside is B.C.’s new minister of education. She is speaking out against Chilliwack school trustee Barry Neufeld and asking him to resign. (Black Press)
New education minister calls on Chilliwack trustee to resign

Whiteside echoes former minister’s promise to look at options to remove Barry Neufeld

Tabor Home in Abbotsford. (Ben Lypka/Abbotsford News)
B.C.’s largest COVID-19 care-home outbreak records 19 deaths, 147 cases

Tabor Home in Abbotsford has been battling outbreak since Nov. 4

Most Read