SafeSport – Hazing

Hazing Policy

It is the policy of USA Hockey that there shall be no hazing of any participant involved in any of its Member Programs by any employee, volunteer, independent contractor or other participant.

Hazing includes any conduct which is intimidating, humiliating, offensive, or physically harmful. The hazing conduct is typically an activity that serves as a condition for joining a group or being socially accepted by a group’s members.

Examples of hazing prohibited by this Policy include, without limitation, requiring or forcing (including through peer pressure) the consumption of alcohol or illegal drugs; tying, taping, or physically restraining a participant; sexual simulations or sexual acts of any nature; sleep deprivation, or the withholding of water and/or food; social actions (e.g. grossly inappropriate or provocative clothing) or public displays (e.g. public nudity) that are illegal or meant to draw ridicule; beating, paddling, or other forms of physical assault. The activity known as “Locker Boxing” (aka fighting with helmet and gloves) is also a form of hazing that can produce head trauma in children and young adults and is prohibited in any USA Hockey Member Program.

Activities that fit the definition of hazing are considered to be hazing regardless of a person’s willingness to cooperate or participate.

Hazing does not include group or team activities that are meant to establish normative team behaviors, or promote team cohesion, so long as such activities do not have reasonable potential to cause emotional or physical distress to any participant. Examples of activities that do not constitute hazing include directing or allowing a younger player to pick up pucks or move nets after practice or bring or fill water bottles, or giving older players first preference in team assignments, responsibilities, accommodations, facilities, or equipment.

While other team members are often the perpetrators of hazing toward their teammates, it is a violation of this Policy if a coach or other responsible adult knows or should know of the hazing but takes no action to intervene on behalf of the targeted participant(s).

A USA Hockey participant or parent of a participant who violates this Hazing Policy is subject to appropriate disciplinary action, including but not limited, to suspension, permanent suspension and/or referral to law enforcement authorities.