Debate continues over Dal women’s hockey team

Suspended hockey players meet with Dal president Tom Traves

This story has been updated since initially published.

Halifax is still debating the suspension of the Dalhousie women’s hockey team. Some agree that the team should be suspended while others think the decision was too extreme.

As of Monday, the university said president Tom Traves would consider all of the players’ statements and get back to students later this week.

In October, the mother of a first-year player reported that third-and-fourth year players pressured rookies into humiliating situations during a fall initiation party.  The university made an investigation and decided to can the rest of the season.

The university has a “zero tolerance policy when it comes to hazing or initiation rituals,” according to Dalhousie spokesperson Charles Crosby.

Humiliation, intimidation, excessive drinking…Crosby says all are unacceptable actions in the eyes of the university.

Crosby says it is up to varsity coaches to explain and enforce policies to their players throughout the season.

He says the university has stood behind its policies throughout this process but “the actions were the actions. The bell can’t be unrung.” He also states that there will be women’s hockey next fall — no matter what happens in the following weeks.

Crosby says he can’t speak openly about the players’ specific actions because “they are serious privacy issues.”

However, he says players are free to talk about it.

In a letter to President Tom Traves, the players said they plan to appeal the university’s decision.


You can read the full version of the letter here:

Team Letter to President by Henry Whitfield

Update: Jan. 16, 10:40 a.m.: Appeal failed. Dalhousie announced the suspension will stand for Dalhousie women's hockey team.