Open Letter to Mr. Luc Tardif, President, International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF)

Jan 13, 2022 | International

We know the decision to cancel the Women’s U18 World Championship, along with six others, was not
made lightly. We know there were logistical, financial, and safety factors that needed to be considered.

However, we hope you can also understand the impact the decision to cancel rather than postpone – for
the second year in a row while the Men’s World Juniors continued – had on thousands of players, coaches,
fans, families, and supporters around the world.

84,758 people from 102 countries have signed a petition entitled “Let the puck drop at the Women’s U18
World Hockey Championships”, which is urging the IIHF to reschedule this important tournament to a later
date – rather than canceling it for the second year in a row.

Included with the petition are 4,232 personal comments, thoughts, and ideas shared by supporters you will
also be interested to read.

The cancellation of the Women’s tournament while the Men’s World Juniors proceeded sent the wrong
message.
By rescheduling the U18 Women’s World Championship, the IIHF will send a message
that:

Women’s hockey matters as much as men’s. Canceling the women’s tournament while pushing
ahead with the men’s despite safety concerns demonstrated a clear prioritization of the men’s
tournament over women’s. Female hockey players are dedicated to their sport and spend hours
training on and off the ice year round, often in preparation for tournaments such as this. They make
many personal sacrifices and bear the financial cost required to make it to a high level of hockey
worthy of being showcased on the world stage.

Women deserve the same opportunity. The U18 Women’s World Championship is often the last
chance these talented players will have to showcase their skills on the world stage. To have this
tournament canceled again – rather than postponed – hinders their opportunity to be seen by
scouts, the media, and fans, and can prevent critical opportunities to play at the university or
national level. This is particularly pressing for women, who have fewer leagues, tournaments, and
hockey career opportunities available to them than men – making this tournament highly important.

We, and 84,758 others, hope you take this opportunity to send a clear message about IIHF’s
position, and your position as its leader, by rescheduling the U18 Women’s World Championship.
We hope this is already a priority as you consider rescheduling all the tournaments, including the Men’s
World Juniors.

In future, we hope the IIHF will prioritize men’s and women’s tournaments equally by seeking solutions that
allow for rescheduling over canceling, and treat all tournaments with the same honour and respect every
single player that laces up their skates to play deserves.

We will continue to circulate this petition until rescheduled dates have been announced.

Thank you,
Lori Bolliger

Foto: Lori Bolliger Photography

 

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