FAQ (Waterloo Minor Hockey)

RETURN TO HOCKEY - FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

DISCLAIMER:  This information is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Waterloo Minor Hockey Association (WMHA) makes no representation and assumes no responsibility in respect of any information herein concerning severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) or  coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) as the circumstances are constantly changing. Any information on SARS-CoV-2 or COVID-19 should be obtained from your doctor or public health authority.

REGISTRATION

Can I register my child now?

A – Yes, you can register your child for Association programming for the 2020-21 season.

 

Will there be hockey this year?

A – Yes, hockey will resume as long and to the extent as public health guidelines permit.

WMHA is planning for the 2020-21 season to be split into two (2) Phases for both our representative and recreational hockey programs.  Phase 1 will include team evaluations and selection and a return to on-ice activity with modified gameplay commencing mid-September for representative hockey and early October for recreational hockey, and will run until December.  We anticipate the possibility of a staged expansion to more regular 5v5 hockey in Phase 2 as public health guidelines permit.

 

What will Rep team rosters look like?

A – Teams will roster 18 players (16 skaters + 2 goalies) (Midget AAA will be permitted to roster up to 18 skaters + 2 goalies).  Up to five (5) Team Officials can be rostered to each team, however, the number of staff on the bench may be limited in order to maintain physical distancing.

 

Who can participate in evaluations for a Waterloo AAA team?

A – Players who are eligible by age may participate provided that they either:

  • were rostered with a Waterloo AAA team in the 2019-20 season; or
  • reside in the City of Waterloo.

Last season (2019-20), my son played in an OMHA centre that is part of the Waterloo AAA Zone (i.e. Centre Wellington, Drayton, Tavistock, Twin Centre, Woolwich).  Can he participate in evaluations for a Waterloo AAA team?

A – No. 

The OMHA is currently only permitting its players to participate with their home association if they did not play AAA in Waterloo during the 2019-20 season.

 

My son did not play AAA in Waterloo last season (2019-20) and we live outside the Waterloo AAA Zone.  Can this player obtain an F-1 AAA Waiver to participate in evaluations for a Waterloo AAA team?

A – No.

Players have the option of playing with the team/association they were rostered to during the 2019-2020 season or returning to their home association.

 

Will WMHA issue F-1 AAA Waivers for the 2020-21 season?

A – No.

Players have the option of playing with the team/association they were rostered to during the 2019-2020 season or returning to their home association.

 

 Who can participate in evaluations for a Waterloo Seeded AA / A team?

A – Players who are eligible by age may participate provided that they either:

  • were rostered with a Waterloo Seeded AA /A team in the 2019-20 season; or
  • reside in the City of Waterloo.

 

Who can participate in evaluations for a Waterloo MD team?

A – Players who are eligible by age and reside in the City of Waterloo may participate.

 

Who can participate in evaluations for a Waterloo Hockey League (House League) team?

A – Players who are eligible by age may participate.

 

Will there be Select hockey this season?

A – No. 

The OHF Return to Hockey Framework stiplulates that players may only participate with one (1)  team in one (1) league for the 2020-21 season.  Accordingly, WMHA is not permitted to offer Select hockey this season.

 

What is the difference between a sanctioned and unsanctioned league?

A – Refer to the OHF Policy on unsanctioned programming.

 

If my child plays in an unsanctioned league or tournament, does that contravene Hockey Canada or OHF guidelines?

A – Refer to the OHF Policy on unsanctioned programming.  This policy stipulates that any participant who participates in an unsanctioned league or tournament after September 30 is not eligible to participate in sanctioned hockey (WMHA, ALLIANCE Hockey, etc.) for the balance of the season. WMHA will be enforcing this provision this coming year.

 

GAMEPLAY

Will there be 5-on-5 hockey?

A – Phase 1 of WMHA’s RTH Plan will consist of modified 4v4 gameplay.  We anticipate a the possibility of a staged expansion to more regular 5v5 hockey in Phase 2 as public health guidelines permit. All game play must be conducted in conjunction with the local PHU and facility protocol and guidelines.

 

Will there still be Referees?

A – Yes.  Game officials are required for all game play at applicable levels about Initiation Programming.

 

Will gameplay be full-ice hockey?

A – U9 (Novice) & Below is required to be played using a modified (half-ice and/or cross-ice) ice format. 

U10 (Minor Atom) and above divisions will be played using full-ice.

 

What will the league structure be for the 2020-2021 season?

A –  Our rep AAA, AA and MD teams will compete in a Tri-City Rep League against teams from our Public Health Unit (Cambridge and Kitchener) as currently permitted by Ontario public health regulations and OHF playing restrictions

House League teams will compete in the Waterloo Hockey League against other Waterloo teams with a possibility of inter-city play against teams from Cambridge and Kitchener depending on registration numbers.

 

Will there be a “Learn to Play” or “Initiation Program” for players below Novice (i.e. 7yrs old and under)?

A – Yes.  Our introductory programming for 4yr to 7yr old players will be available, but will be restricted to smaller group sizes to better allow for physical distancing on the ice.

 

PUBLIC HEALTH & ARENAS

Refer to the Hockey Canada Return to Hockey Safety Guidelines for comprehensive information.

 

What will the process be for entering and using our arenas in Waterloo?

A – A check-in procedure for participants will be required to be completed prior to participation in any on-ice or off-ice activity.  The check-in procedure will require each participant (coaches, players and parents) to complete the OHF Health Screening Questionnaire and for the relevant team coach or trainer to record the results prior to each and every on-ice and off-ice activity.  WMHA is analyzing options to track and organize this information online and/or via an app to allow for ease of compliance.

Any participant who answers YES to any of the questions on the OHF Health Screening Questionnaire will not be permitted to participate in the activity and will need to take the actions as required by the Hockey Canada Return to Hockey Safety Guidelines before being permitted to return.

Use of arena facilities will look very different during the 2020-21 season.  The City of Waterloo has implemented protocols and procedures for facility access and use to meet the public health and safety requirements of Province of Ontario and the Region of Waterloo Public Health. All coaches, players and parents will be expected and required to abide by arena facility procedures and protocols when accessing or use City of Waterloo arenas.  The City also has the authority to increase or decrease restrictions on access to and use of arena facilities at their discretion to ensure the safe operation of these facilities.

 

Will masks be required to be worn in arenas?

A – The Region of Waterloo’s Mask Bylaw applies to indoor areas in city buildings, including all arenas. Coaches, players and parents are required to follow the bylaw and wear face coverings in facilities prior to on-ice participation (including in dressing rooms).

Coaches and team staff must wear cloth masks where physical distancing is not possible, such as in the dressing room or on the bench.  Players will not be required to wear a mask on the ice.

 

What do I do if my child tests positive for COVID-19?

A – Keep your child home and out of the hockey environment. It is also important to communicate with your physician and public health authority, ensuring you follow the steps identified.  Refer to the Hockey Canada Return to Hockey Safety Guidelines for comprehensive information.

 

What if a parent/family member tests positive for COVID-19? What protocols do we follow?

A – If a parent or family member tests positive for COVID–19, the player and their family will need to stay out of the hockey environment. They should contact their physician and public health authority for instructions. The player will need a note from their physician or public health authority to return to play. Refer to the Hockey Canada Return to Hockey Safety Guidelines for comprehensive information.

 

If someone on my child’s team tests positive for COVID-19, will the team be allowed to continue to play hockey?

A – If someone on your child’s team tests positive, public health authority guidelines will determine contact tracing and isolation requirements. It is possible, therefore, that one diagnosis on a team could lead to that team being required to pause hockey activities until the public health authorities determine it is safe to return. Refer to the Hockey Canada Return to Hockey Safety Guidelines for comprehensive information.

 

What if my child is sick but does not have COVID-19?

A – Keep your child home and out of the hockey environment.  The player should follow up with their physician and the public health line. They will require a note from their physician to return to play. Refer to the Hockey Canada Return to Hockey Safety Guidelines for comprehensive information.

 

Will parents be allowed in the stands to watch games?

A – This will be determined by public health units and facility guidelines. Families should be prepared to minimize the number of parents/guardians/spectators that attend in order to limit the number of people in the facility.  Currently, the City of Waterloo will allow one (1) parent or guardian to enter arena facilities if a participant requires assistance.

 

COACHES & BENCH STAFF

What’s happening with coaching clinics for the 2020-21 season?

A – Coaching clinics will not be held in person during the 2020-21 season. Hockey Canada and the OHF are currently working on a plan for training NEW coaches for this season. More information will be released in the coming weeks. We understand that there will be a need for flexibility in many areas this season and we will do our best to make sure the start of the hockey season is not impeded by rigid application of regulations.

Printed from waterloominorhockey.com on Friday, September 25, 2020 at 7:26 PM