Apologies issued for offensive hockey locker room video
Published Monday, January 21, 2019 7:53PM MST Last Updated Tuesday, January 22, 2019 6:36PM MST
The Fort McMurray Minor Hockey Association has apologized after a video of three players doing an Indigenous dance in the locker room caused an uproar.
In the video, a boy is seen beating his hockey stick against a trash can lid, as he and others are jumping around and shouting. Laughter is also audible.
The video has been shared more than 5,000 times. One commenter called it “pathetic.” Another person said, “White people really need to stop mocking our culture.”
The FMMHA issued a statement Monday:
“The FMMHA is devastated by the actions of members of the Midget A Team in their disrespectful video. Their actions are in no way indicative of our values or the values of any of our House League or Elite Stream Junior Oil Barons teams. It is wrong and will not be tolerated. The display of ignorance is sad and gravely unfortunate.
We will deal with the members swiftly and accordingly. Our follow up will include but not solely involve, an educational aspect. These players will know how deeply impactful their wrong actions are.
We are sick to know how many people this hurts and offends and for that we sincerely apologize on their behalf.”
On Facebook, a boy who claims to be in the video said the three of them are Indigenous, but apologized for the behaviour.
“I would just like to say I am deeply sorry for the actions we made and to clarify we were not trying to be racist or offending anyone or anything,” he wrote. “This video was us fooling around in the locker room and we weren’t using our heads.”
Some who have commented on the post excused the boys’ behaviour by pointing out their ethnicity.
“I don’t think it matters if they’re Indigenous or not,” Jed Johns, an Indigenous relations consultant, told CTV News. “It definitely stirs an emotional response.”
Hockey Alberta told CTV News it is investigating the incident with FMMHA.
The FMMHA has not responded CTV News' request for comment.
With files from Dan Grummett