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SIMSBURY YOUTH HOCKEY ASSOCIATION (SYHA) LOCKER ROOM POLICY

Revision Approved August 8, 2017 (amends Policy Paper Sections 7.3 and 8.9)

To download a copy of this policy, please click HERE

In addition to the development of our hockey players and enjoyment of the sport of hockey, the safety and protection of our participants is central to SYHA goals. Simsbury Youth Hockey Association adheres to USA Hockey’s SafeSport Program, a requirement for all adult coaches, managers, and volunteers, as a means to help protect its participants from physical abuse, sexual abuse and other types of misconduct, including emotional abuse, bullying, threats, harassment and hazing. To help prevent abuse or misconduct from occurring in our locker rooms, SYHA has adopted the following locker room policy. This policy is designed to maintain personal privacy as well as to reduce the risk of misconduct in locker rooms.

Simsbury Youth Hockey offers locker rooms at our three practice / game locations – Simsbury Farms (4),  Westminister School (2), and International Skating Center of CT (8).  Teams in our travel program will also regularly travel to play games at other arenas where locker rooms and facilities will vary from location to location.  At arenas for which you are unfamiliar, parents should plan to have extra time and some flexibility in making arrangements for their player to dress, undress, and shower if desired.

SUPERVISION OF LOCKER ROOMS AND OTHER TEAM FACILITIES USED BY SYHA

SYHA has predictable and limited use of locker rooms and changing areas (e.g., generally 30-45 minutes before and following practices and games). This allows for direct and regular monitoring of locker room areas. While constant monitoring inside of locker rooms and changing areas might be the most effective way to prevent problems, we understand that this would likely make some players uncomfortable and may even place our staff at risk for unwarranted suspicion.

A sweep of the locker rooms and changing areas is conducted before players arrive. If the coaches are not inside the locker rooms, either a coach or voluntary locker room monitors (each of which has been screened) will be posted directly outside of the locker rooms and changing areas during periods of use.  Doors will be left open only when adequate privacy is still possible, so that only participants (coaches and players), approved team personnel and family members are permitted in the locker room. Team personnel will also secure the locker room appropriately during times when the team is on the ice.

In accordance with USA Hockey’s guidelines regarding meetings between minor players and coaches or other SYHA adult personnel, any individual meetings between a player and a coach or other SYHA personnel in a locker room or other isolated space shall include, at a minimum, a second responsible adult.  There will be no exceptions to this rule.

PROHIBITED CONDUCT AND REPORTING

SYHA prohibits all types of physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, bullying, threats, harassment and hazing, all as described in the USA Hockey SafeSport Handbook. Participants, employees or volunteers in SYHA may be subject to disciplinary action for violation of these locker room policies or for engaging in any misconduct or abuse or that violates the USA Hockey SafeSport Policies.

Reports of any actual or suspected violations, you may email USA Hockey at SafeSport@usahockey.org or may call 1-800-888-4656.  You may also contact Paul Melanson, President at Melanson207@hotmail.com and/or Kelle Becconsall, VP of Policy at kellebecc@gmail.com.

PLAYER CONDUCT IN LOCKER ROOMS

In addition to the general Code of Conduct set forth above, players will adhere to following locker room standards of behavior.

Players are expected to listen and follow the instructions of the designated locker room monitors at all times.  Locker rooms, both home and away, will be left clean and in good condition.  In particular, but not exclusively, players may be disciplined for:

  • Defacing or destroying property belonging to any individual, team, association, or rink
  • Wrestling, boxing, shoving, or engaging in physical contact of any manner
  • Throwing items in the locker room
  • Touching any equipment or clothing that does not belong to that player
  • Yelling, screaming, or shouting.  Conversation is to be kept at a comfortable level at all times
  • Stickhandling or performing other hockey warm-up drills inside the locker room.  Hockey warm-up drills are only to be performed in areas designated by Head Coaches
  • Exhibiting disrespectful behavior to fellow players, coaches or team representatives

PARENTS IN LOCKER ROOMS

Except for players at the younger age groups [Hockey Stars and Mites], SYHA discourages parents from entering locker rooms unless it is truly necessary. If a player needs assistance with his or her uniform or gear, if the player is or may be injured, or a player’s disability warrants assistance, then we ask that parents let the coach know beforehand that he or she will be helping the player.

Naturally, with our youngest age groups it is necessary for parents to assist the players getting dressed. We encourage parents to teach their players as young as possible how to get dressed so that players will learn as early as possible how to get dressed independently. In circumstances where parents are permitted in the locker room, coaches are permitted to ask that the parents leave for a short time before the game and for a short time after the game so that the coaches may address the players. As players get older, the coach may in his or her discretion prohibit parents from a locker room.

MIXED GENDER TEAMS

Some of our teams consist of both male and female players. It is important that the privacy rights of all of our players are given consideration and appropriate arrangements made.  During the regular season, all players on mixed gender teams are required to arrive at the rink wearing their hockey base layers or shorts and tee shirts (in good condition – no holes or tears in clothing) under their street clothes.  All members of the team must have this minimum attire before entering a co-ed locker room so that no player of one gender has the opportunity to see players of the opposite gender in a state of dress / undress.

CELL PHONES AND OTHER MOBILE RECORDING DEVICES

Cell phones and other mobile devices with recording capabilities, including voice recording, still cameras and video cameras, are not permitted to be used in the locker rooms. If phones or other mobile devices must be used, they should be taken outside of the locker room. [it may be permissible to have team manager collect phones]

This policy shall be reviewed annually by the board of directors.  Any changes to the policy shall be communicated accordingly.