While playing in Charlottetown, a player from Newfoundland stated he was subjected to racism.
Two Black men who played hockey on Prince Edward Island want the body that administers the sport to take racism on the rink more seriously.
During a recent competition on the Island, Mark Connors, a U-18 hockey player from Halifax, said he was said the N-word multiple times and told “this is a white man’s sport.”
Josh McKinnon of Brackley Beach, who played for the Summerside Western Capitals for four years as a kid, said it’s “frustrating” to see these types of situations still occurring in 2021, more than a decade after he first joined the team.
“Looking back on what you went through yourself, it’s terrible what he’s going through,” he remarked.
“No word in the English language can inflict as much pain on a Caucasian as what Mark was called.”
Hockey P.E.I., according to McKinnon, does not deal forcefully enough with incidences of racism. He attributes it to a lack of education.
“When it comes to racism, Hockey PEI appears to be falling short. They even admitted in a CBC piece that this is a flaw in their training “he stated
He stated, “Three weeks for an investigation is simply too long.” “You can get a five-game punishment within a day for using a homophobic slur with very little research [based on] simply what the ref says and what the coach or the other player says,” says one player.
All forms of discrimination, according to McKinnon, must be addressed.
Not a ‘white man’s sport’
According to the National Hockey League, the Coloured Hockey League was the first organised professional hockey league in North America, founded in 1895. The league ran until 1930, and all of the players were black.
“That very much wraps it up,” McKinnon added, noting that some individuals are unaware of the background.
He said that it makes no difference who invented hockey or who were the first players. Instead, he considers it an “honour” for everyone to compete in the sport.
Marco Thorne, a former P.E.I. hockey player, said he was saddened — but not surprised — by the latest racist incident.