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KIJHL releases statement on league operations

Leafs rookie forward Rhett Hamilton gathers the puck in front of the net before scoring his first junior hockey goal during Friday's game at the NDCC Arena against Grand Forks. The KIJHL quickly postponed its upcoming schedule games in order to fall in line with the Provincial Health Order issued on November 19th. — Bruce Fuhr, The Nelson Daily

The Kootenay International Junior Hockey League has provided an update on league operations following the Provincial Health Order issued on November 19th and the subsequent policy clarification provided by Viasport on November 20th:

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in March, the KIJHL has made the health and safety of our athletes, staff, volunteers, billet families and fans our top priority.

In doing so, we have closely observed all of the guidance and protocols outlined by the Province of British Columbia, the Provincial Health Officer, Viasport, Hockey Canada and BC Hockey, as well as our team’s home facilities.

On Thursday, Dr. Bonnie Henry announced additional province-wide restrictions, and we have been working hard to clarify their impact on our league.

In light of the new parameters outlined on Friday evening by Viasport, which include restrictions concerning travel between different communities, the KIJHL will pause all regular season game play beginning Saturday, November 21st. Under the current Provincial Health Order, competition between teams cannot resume until Monday, December 8th at the earliest.

Other Phase 3 activities, including team practices, may proceed so long as they adhere to all aspects of the KIJHL’s Return to Play policies.

We recognize that circumstances can change quickly, and we will update our plans as soon as new information becomes available.

The KIJHL appreciates the patience and support of our fans, volunteers, billet families and sponsors as we navigate this process.