The Independent Third Party (ITP) is a fully independent group appointed to administer all Hockey Canada maltreatment complaints in a procedurally fair manner. The ITP may redirect complaints to provincial member associations or the Abuse-Free Sport and the Office of the Sport Integrity Commissioner depending on the jurisdiction or nature of the complaint.
The ITP’s role is to administer complaints. The ITP does not investigate or adjudicate complaints but it ensures that complaints are processed in a confidential, neutral and procedurally fair manner. The ITP hires external mediators, investigators and adjudicators for the complaints within its jurisdiction.
All of the roles, responsibilities and obligations of the ITP are set out in the Maltreatment Complaint Management Policy.
The ITP does not advocate for one side or the other. The ITP remains neutral and procedurally fair throughout the process.
The ITP receives all maltreatment complaints pertaining to individuals who are subject to Hockey Canada and Member policies and codes of conduct; What is a Member?
After receiving the complaint, the ITP analyzes the complaint to determine the appropriate jurisdiction and process.
Not all maltreatment complaints are processed by the ITP:
Some maltreatment complaints will fall under Hockey Canada’s Members and, if so, the ITP provides the Members with the complaint materials so that the Member can manage the complaint. This does not mean that the complaint is without merit or that it is not maltreatment – only that the Member is the appropriate organization to handle it.
Some maltreatment complaints will fall under the ITP’s jurisdiction and, if so, the ITP determines what ITP process should apply.
What kind of cases are processed by the ITP?
The ITP administers complaints such as:
The ITP may need to report matters to law enforcement, child protection services and/or Hockey Canada’s insurers.
The ITP does not report matters to Hockey Canada unless the complaint is under the ITP’s jurisdiction and only after a final adjudication decision has been made.
If the complaint is within the ITP’s jurisdiction, it will retain mediators, investigators and/or adjudicators to process the complaint.
Reporting Abuse or Harassment is often a difficult process. The Independent Third Party is committed to operating in a trauma-informed manner.
Additional resources will be developed as the Independent Third Party continues its work and analyzes the ongoing needs to ensure a safe and trauma-informed complaint mechanism.
The disciplinary process is confidential and involves the Parties (including, where appropriate, their guardian, parent or other adult representative), the ITP, the Adjudicative Chair or Adjudicative Panel, and any independent advisors to the Adjudicative Panel. Hockey Canada or a Member may be involved in the event a Complaint was initially submitted to it, but shall otherwise not be involved in the proceedings. Once initiated and until a decision is released, none of the Parties will disclose confidential information relating to the Complaint, including any interim sanction relating thereto, to any person not involved in the proceedings except to obtain legal advice or unless required by law.
There may be situations where the ITP is required to notify an organization such as an international federation, law enforcement, insurers, Sport Canada or other agencies as required by law that a complaint alleging a breach of the Universal Code of Conduct to Prevent and Address Maltreatment in Sport (UCCMS) or another relevant policy or code of conduct has been filed and disciplinary proceedings have been initiated. Even where such disclosure is required, all aspects of the Complaint will still be managed by the ITP in accordance with the Policy.
Any failure to respect the confidentiality requirement may result in sanctions by the Adjudicative Chair or Adjudicative Panel, as applicable.
A key feature of the ITP structure is its independence from Hockey Canada. The ITP has sole jurisdiction to administer complaints and keeps the identity of complainants confidential from Hockey Canada and Member associations.
The ITP will not be unduly influenced by anyone at Hockey Canada regarding the complaint administration process. Although the ITP mechanism is staffed by some lawyers, those lawyers do not provide any legal advice to Hockey Canada.
Hockey Canada will receive anonymized reports from the ITP from time to time documenting the number of complaints received, categorizing complaints and reporting on other metrics such as response times and the time required to close complaints. This reporting protects the identity of all those involved with a complaint process.
An independent third party will oversee all complaints and subsequent discipline that fall outside the jurisdiction of the Office of the Sport Integrity Commissioner.
This code of conduct ensures behaviour consistent with Hockey Canada’s core values that produces a safe and positive environment within programs, activities and events.
Hockey Canada has adopted the Universal Code of Conduct to Prevent and Address Maltreatment in Sport, which is key to advancing a respectful culture in sport across the country.