Hockey Canada stands for safe sport that is free of maltreatment of any kind. We all play a role in creating a healthy culture that fosters safe sport practice and offers athletes, coaches and all members of the sport community strong resources in education and reporting.

The presence of maltreatment in sport requires a concerted and systemic effort by a variety of different organizations and governments to come together and identify solutions and clearly define roles and responsibilities.

Independent Safe Sport Complaint Processes

How to file a complaint involving national team programs and international level participants.


On October 27, 2022 Hockey Canada formally adopted the Universal Code of Conduct to Prevent and Address Maltreatment in Sport (UCCMS) and joined Abuse-Free Sport, the independent program to prevent and address maltreatment in sport in Canada.  For national and international level programming, Hockey Canada, and its national level stakeholders have access to the services of the Office of the Sport Integrity Commissioner (OSIC), which is responsible for the administration of the UCCMS for Hockey Canada and serves as the central hub of Abuse-Free Sport.

The UCCMS sets out our expectations for conduct and behaviour to advance a respectful sport culture that delivers quality, inclusive, accessible, welcoming and safe sport experiences. The UCCMS generally applies to all participants involved in Hockey Canada activities at a national level including but not limited to all events and teams over which Hockey Canada has jurisdiction such as national championships and national teams. 

We expect that any individual involved in Hockey Canada activities conduct themselves with integrity and to the highest standards of conduct, in accordance with Hockey Canada values, as well as the UCCMS. Pursuant to the UCCMS, participants must report any actual or suspected cases of maltreatment to the Office of the Sport Integrity Commissioner by following the process laid out on OSIC’s website. OSIC is responsible for administering the UCCMS using trauma-informed processes that are compassionate, efficient and provide fairness, respect and equity to all parties involved.

Alternatively, you can contact the Canadian Sport Helpline, a bilingual national toll-free confidential helpline for harassment, abuse and discrimination. The Helpline provides a safe place for victims and witnesses of incidents of harassment, abuse and discrimination in sport to discuss their concerns.

The Canadian Sport Helpline will provide callers with advice on the next steps they can take, as well as direct them to the most appropriate international, national and local services and resources available to them, including the police, child protection services, existing provincial/territorial helplines, or any other relevant services. It provides professional listening and referral services by phone and text at 1-888-83-SPORT (77678) and by email at [email protected], from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET, seven days a week.

How to file a complaint involving Hockey Canada-sanctioned programming (Minor Hockey and non-National Team/National Events)


For alleged incidents involving other levels of Hockey Canada-sanctioned programming (not national or international level), an additional confidential reporting mechanism overseen by an independent third party (ITP) has been established. This reporting mechanism is known as the Independent Third Party and is led by Brian Ward and Jahmiah Ferdinand.

The role of the independent third party is to:

  • receive all hockey related maltreatment, sexual violence, harassment, abuse or discrimination complaints by someone affiliated with Hockey Canada;
  • analyze complaints in light of Hockey Canada and Member policies and determine how they are to be managed and the proper jurisdiction;
  • where applicable, ensure matters are properly reported to law enforcement or child protection services;
  • retain investigators and dispute resolution panels who are also independent of Hockey Canada;
  • work with Canada's Office of the Sport Integrity Commissioner and the Member associations to ensure no gaps in complaint coverage and that all complaints are handled in accordance with applicable policies and that decisions are documented in writing.

The role of the independent third party is not to:

  • process appeals for matters that take place in other jurisdictions;
  • receive complaints related to personality conflicts and differing opinions that do not constitute maltreatment;
  • receive complaints relating to matters such as transfer requests or appeals;
  • receive complaints about operational matters such as fee disputes and refunds;

The new Hockey Canada Discipline and Complaints policy that outlines the role of the Independent Third Party and the applicable processes is available for download here.

A key feature of the Independent Third Party structure is its independence from Hockey Canada. The Independent Third Party has sole jurisdiction to handle complaints and keeps the identity of complainants confidential from Hockey Canada and Member associations. The Independent Third Party will not be unduly influenced by anyone at Hockey Canada regarding the complaint administration process. Although the Independent Third Party mechanism is staffed by some lawyers, those lawyers do not provide any legal advice to Hockey Canada.

Hockey Canada will receive anonymized reports from the Independent Third Party from time to time documenting the number of complaints received, categorizing complaints and reporting on other metrics such as response times and the time required to close complaints. This reporting protects the identity of all those involved with a complaint process while also ensuring proper oversight of the performance of the Independent Third Party.

Reporting Abuse or Harassment is often a difficult process. The Independent Third Party is committed to operating in a trauma informed manner.

For example:

  • All reports will be kept entirely confidential, in line with the wishes of the person making the complaint. This includes confidentiality from Hockey Canada and Member association staff.
  • All Complaints will be followed up in a timely manner.
  • The Independent Third Party has developed resources to share with survivors of abuse and can direct survivors to additional supports.
  • The Independent Third Party answers questions about the complaint process.
  • Complaints are taken seriously and rigorously examined.

The Independent Third Party is staffed by a number of diverse professionals reflecting both gender and racial diversity. Service is available in both French and English.

Additional resources will be developed as the Independent Third Party continues its work and analyzes the ongoing needs to ensure a safe and trauma informed complaint mechanism.

Complaints can be submitted by email to [email protected].

Hockey Canada Safety Programs


An independent third party will oversee all complaints and subsequent discipline that fall outside the jurisdiction of the Office of the Sport Integrity Commissioner.
This code of conduct ensures behaviour consistent with Hockey Canada’s core values that produces a safe and positive environment within programs, activities and events.
Hockey Canada has adopted the Universal Code of Conduct to Prevent and Address Maltreatment in Sport, which is key to advancing a respectful culture in sport across the country.
Hockey Canada works to integrate safety messaging into its programming and every-day business. The framework for a safe environment is made up of essential steps that can be taken on and off the ice.
The Respect in Sport Activity Leader program is Hockey Canada’s official online course for the prevention of abuse, bullying and harassment, creating a safer, more ethical hockey environment.
Hockey Canada is determined to reduce concussions in hockey. Respect, rules, rule enforcement, education, awareness and skill development are all key steps to reducing concussions.
A player is injured – what is your role? It is always concerning to see a player go down on the ice, however if we all know our responsibility when this happens it allows for a quick and organized response.
Independent Safe Sport Complaint Process