Friday, March 26 — The Greater Toronto Hockey League announced today the difficult decision to cancel the balance of the 2020-21 season. The GTHL Board rendered this decision after conducting an evaluation of the current situation in Toronto, Peel and York Regions and consulting with health experts from Toronto Public Health.
As Toronto and the Region of Peel remain in the Grey Lockdown zone, the GTHL continues to adopt a cautious approach that relies on advice from doctors and health experts who are working in the fields of epidemiology and vaccines.
“This was a very difficult decision for the GTHL Board of Directors to make,” said GTHL Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer Scott Oakman. “We had been hopeful that if the infection rates subsided and areas returned to the Orange level, we could offer some programming. We now turn our focus to planning for the 2021-22 season and are excited by getting programs started in the fall.”
In reaching this decision, the GTHL Board of Directors had three objectives in mind:
- mitigate COVID-19 risk for families and the community;
- provide certainty for Members where possible;
- act in the best interests of the GTHL and hockey in the Greater Toronto Area.
The Board’s decision shifts the focus to the 2021-22 season with the goal of ensuring the utmost safety for players, families and the GTHL community, and the overall stability of the league.
The Board of Directors remain optimistic with the current and developing vaccine rollout as the Government of Ontario is projecting Phase 3 (Steady State: Vaccinations for Adults 59 years and younger) to begin in July 2021 and onwards. This provides hope for the GTHL and its Member organizations to resume activities for the highly anticipated 2021-22 season.
As planning and progression towards next season begins, the Board of Directors will continue to consult with health experts from Toronto Public Health and the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.
The GTHL encourages players, families, teams, and organizations to remain active while safely supporting the community as everyone eagerly awaits to be back on the ice together next season. Regular physical activity, volunteering, and acts of kindness are proven to improve mental health in people of all ages. For more information on mental health and wellbeing resources, visit: www.gthlcanada.com/mental-health-supports/
About the Greater Toronto Hockey League
Founded in 1911, the GTHL is a non-profit organization and the largest minor hockey league in the world. The GTHL registers more than 40,000 annual participants in Mississauga, Toronto, Markham, and Vaughan. The purpose of the GTHL is to govern organized hockey for youth within its jurisdiction and to foster the development of good character, citizenship, and sportsmanship.
For more information, please contact:
Coordinator, Communications and Marketing
Greater Toronto Hockey League