While the annual USA Hockey Winter Meeting is taking place, there seems to be quite a bit of confusion among some people as it regards a Legal Division proposal addressing “unsanctioned” players, teams, and competition.
Having read the proposal several times, though it is lengthy, it does answer many questions quite clearly.
Most importantly USAH puts it in writing that players coming to USAH programs from programs outside of USAH can not be penalized.
“Any Individual Participant may become a member of USA Hockey. Membership in or registration with another sanctioning body may not be used as a basis to deny membership in USA Hockey, its Affiliates or local programs. Correspondingly, no Individual Participant may be penalized for participating in a program that is not sanctioned by USA Hockey. Any On the other hand, an Individual Participant may be disqualified from membership for violation of USA Hockey Bylaws, Rules & Regulations or Policies in accordance with USA Hockey’s Dispute Resolution Procedures.”
This should answer the question parents and players have been asking.
The rule change proposal also addresses or clarifies that USAH sanctioned teams will not be covered by insurance if they play against non USAH sanctioned teams.
The proposal outlines how teams may play non USAH teams without facing potential discipline from USAH. The guidelines for that play though would be very prohibitive for just about any team to operate within those guidelines due to additional costs involved.
Why clarify, or place better descriptors on these rules now?
One Junior Team Owner speaking on the condition of anonymity said;
“The issue of ACHA teams playing against non USAH teams has to be addressed. We also needed to address in season youth hockey competitions that are now seeing some overlap between USAH teams and non USAH teams.”
TJHN will update this story as more information becomes available.