Ask the Official: Hateful or Offensive Comments

By Dave Zednik, IHOA Registrar

QUESTION: A player directs offensive or hateful comments or actions towards an opponent, which the Referee does not hear. The non-offending team brings it to the Referee’s attention. May the Referee assess the prescribed match penalty based on the reported incident?

ANSWER: No. While these situations threaten the integrity of the game, the actual incident must be heard and/or seen by an On-Ice Official in order to assess the match penalty. Rule Reference 601(e.3).

The Referee should report the incident to the Coach or Captain of the team allegedly using the offensive comments or actions and advise the team of the required penalty if such comments or actions are subsequently heard (or seen). At the same stoppage, the Referee should similarly advise the team reporting the incident. In addition, the Referee is required to submit an incident report through the game reporting system to notify the Proper Authorities of the incident.

Categories: Ask the Official, featured, IHOA, Officials

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