Hockey players recall pain of bullying
Started by a hockey coach alarmed by bullying on his team, pink tape games were played across Nova Scotia on Saturday
“This guy was throwing ice balls, calling us names and pushing us.”
at was Liam Lamrock’s experience with bullying.
Saturday, he joined his Truro Atom A Bearcats team mates, and their opponents, the Cumberland County Ramblers, in wrapping pink tape around his hockey stick, before the showcase game of minor hockey’s day to take a stand against bullying.
“I don’t really like that, could you please stop,” said Lamrock, from Truro, when asked what he would say to his tormentor. “I don’t think bullying is okay.”
e game at Truro’s Rath-eastlink Community Centre began with a ceremonial puck drop by RCMP Const. Tammy Wade.
Before the two Atom A teams began their pre-game warm-up, they watched a short video explaining the Pink Tape Campaign, now a province-wide campaign against bullying in hockey.
The campaign began when Cole Harbour hockey coach Blair Dole, who is also an RCMP o cer, learned of a bullying incident on his team last season.
He used pink tape to start a conversation among his players and help them address the issue.
Players in Truro and elsewhere wrapped their sticks in the tape and donned helmets sporting Pink Tape Campaign stickers, in a campaign backed by both the RCMP and Hockey Nova Scotia.
“I de nitely think we need to be talking and communicating and educating children and parents on the e ects of bullying,” said Robbin Ward, whose son Carter Worr plays for Truro.
Just one day before the game, the Valley native was hit and called names by another child at school.
While Carter himself was somewhat reluctant to talk, it was a message that resonated with parents and children from both teams.
Some of the Truro Bearcats’ Amherst opponents are also bullying survivors.
Player Evan Bird remembered other children making fun of his voice, “saying I sounded like a ve-year-old girl and it’s happened plenty more than once.”
When he was eight, he attended a camp with children who were 11 or 12, who ganged up on him.
“It sucks to get bullied and I think it’s great that everyone in this league has to have pink tape, to stand up for these kids who got bullied when they were younger,” said Bird.
His father Robert Bird said hockey rinks – which often see players behaving badly on the ice – should instead be safe and fun places for young players.
“I’m very proud of him, he’s wise beyond his years,” said Robert of his son. “We’re really happy to be participating in this today. e awareness is great, but there needs to be some positive action come as a result of this and if even just one kid learns that when they see something that’s wrong to step in and go get an adult, it will all be worthwhile.”
The Truro Atom A Bearcats faced o against their Cumberland Ramblers opponents in a showcase game against bullying Saturday, beginning with a ceremonial puck drop at Truro’s Rath-eastlink Community Centre. From left, Cumberland player Ethan Totten, Josh Burcham, Const. Tammy Wade, Alexander Burcham and Truro player Jordan Carr.
Truro Atom A Bearcats and their Cumberland Ramblers opponents gathered in unity Saturday at the RECC. Hockey players from both teams joined others across the province in wrapping pink tape around their sticks, sending a clear anti-bullying message.
Minor hockey players joined forces against bullying in a special game at Truro’s REC on Saturday. Players used pink tape on their sticks to symbolize their stance against bullying. From left, Jaxon Harrison, Evan Bird, Carter Worr and Liam Lamrock.