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

Five to six years of log accumulation at Diana Lake Provincial Park is currently being cleaned up by a District of Port Edward and Parks BC partnership. (Photo: Supplied by District of Port Edward)
Diana Lake Provincial Park clean up underway

Port Edward District spearheaded the park clean up securing $80,000 in funds from Ridley Terminal

A coal-fired power plant seen through dense smog from the window of an electric bullet train south of Beijing, December 2016. China has continued to increase thermal coal production and power generation, adding to greenhouse gas emissions that are already the world’s largest. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)
LNG featured at B.C. energy industry, climate change conference

Hydrogen, nuclear, carbon capture needed for Canada’s net-zero goal

Victoria’s Royal Jubilee Hospital took in two COVID-19 patients from Northern Health as part of a provincial agreement. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria hospital takes in two COVID-19 patients from Northern Health

Royal Jubilee Hospital takes patients as part of provincial transport network

An aerial shot of Cedar Valley Lodge this past August, LNG Canada’s newest accommodation for workers. This is where several employees are isolating after a COVID-19 outbreak was declared on Nov. 19. (Photo courtesy of LNG Canada)
52 positive COVID-19 cases now associated with LNG Canada site outbreak

Eight cases still active, 44 considered recovered

Northern Health announced on Dec. 1 holiday changes to the medical travel bus schedule for December and January 2021. (Photo: supplied)
Holiday schedule changes for Northern Health Connections bus

N.H. announces transportation time changes from Prince Rupert to Prince George

Motorists wait to enter a Fraser Health COVID-19 testing facility, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, Nov. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Another 694 diagnosed with COVID-19 in B.C. Thursday

Three more health care outbreaks, 12 deaths

A demonstrator wears representations of sea lice outside the Fisheries and Oceans Canada offices in downtown Vancouver Sept. 24, demanding more action on the Cohen Commission recommendations to protect wild Fraser River sockeye. (Quinn Bender photo)
First Nations renew call to revoke salmon farm licences

Leadership council implores use of precautionary principle in Discovery Islands

Ten-month-old Aidan Deschamps poses for a photo with his parents Amanda Sully and Adam Deschamps in this undated handout photo. Ten-month-old Aidan Deschamps was the first baby in Canada to be diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy through Ontario’s newborn screening program. The test was added to the program six days before he was born. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Children’s Hospital Eastern Ontario *MANDATORY CREDIT*
First newborn tested for spinal muscular atrophy in Canada hits new milestones

‘If Aidan had been born any earlier or anywhere else our story would be quite different’

(Pixabay)
Canadians’ mental health has deteriorated with the second wave, study finds

Increased substance use one of the ways people are coping

An RCMP officer confers with military rescuers outside their Cormorant helicopter near Bridesville, B.C. Tuesday, Dec. 1. Photo courtesy of RCMP Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey
Good Samaritan helped Kootenay police nab, rescue suspect which drew armed forces response

Midway RCMP said a Good Samaritan helped track the suspect, then brought the arresting officer dry socks

People line up at a COVID-19 assessment centre during the COVID-19 pandemic in Scarborough, Ont., on Wednesday, December 2, 2020. Toronto and Peel region continue to be in lockdown. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
COVID-19 vaccine approval could be days away as pressures mount on health-care system

Many health officials in regions across the country have reported increasing pressures on hospitals

(Needpix.com)
Pandemic has ‘exacerbated’ concerns for B.C. children and youth with special needs: report

Pandemic worsened an already patchwork system, representative says

Most Read