A petition calling on the provincial government to allow the B.C. Hockey League to resume play has been launched by former NHL player Garry Valk. (Black Press file photo)

A petition calling on the provincial government to allow the B.C. Hockey League to resume play has been launched by former NHL player Garry Valk. (Black Press file photo)

Petition calls for government to allow B.C. Hockey League to start playing

Launched by former NHL player Garry Valk

A former NHL forward and TV analyst has launched a petition asking the provincial government to allow Major Junior and Junior A hockey leagues to start up again.

Garry Valk, who played for the Vancouver Canucks and worked as an analyst on their TV broadcasts after his playing days, said on the petition that the mental health of youth is something that has not been taken into consideration by B.C.’s elected officials.

“The BCHL Junior A hockey league has proven they can safely and responsibly play hockey while keeping the community safe,” wrote Valk, whose son, Garrett, is a member of the B.C. Hockey League’s Trail Smoke Eaters. “We safely played our preseason games in our cohorts before the season was abruptly cancelled.

“It is clearly demonstrated now that hockey can safely be resumed, as seen in all other Junior A leagues in Canada and USA and Europe.”

The QMJHL, NCAA, USHL, NAHL, AJHL, SJHL, and now the WHL are all moving ahead with their return-to-play protocols.

The BCHL and WHL in British Columbia are the only leagues yet to have a return-to-play set. The Kootenay International Junior B Hockey League cancelled its season in early February.

“As we see all other junior hockey leagues playing and kids from those leagues being scouted and potentially drafted while our B.C. kids sit on the sidelines, we call on (Premier) John Horgan, Dr. Bonnie Henry, and (health minister) Adrian Dix to allow the BCHL and WHL to return to play before it is too late,” said Valk.

The petition has drawn more than 3,100 signatures toward a goal of 4,000 as of Sunday morning, Feb. 28.

The province will announce the next steps in B.C.’s COVID-19 immunization plan Monday, March 1, at 10:30 a.m.

READ MORE: BCHL season delayed once more, but league still hopes to play

READ MORE: KIJHL cancels season due to ongoing COVID-19 restrictions



roger@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BCHL

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Revelstoke Women's Shelter Society has released an educational video about unhealthy relationships. (Contributed)
Revelstoke Women’s Shelter Society educates on healthy relationships with new video

April 11-17 is Prevention of Violence Against Women Week

A 46-year-old man from Armstrong died in Revelstoke hospital after being injured in the Lumby area. (File photo)
Armstrong snowmobiler dies in Revelstoke hospital

46-year-old man injured in Tsuius Mountain area of Monashees around Lumby area

Guy Barber in front of his jewellery store at 208 Mackenzie Avenue, circa 1915. (Revelstoke Museum and Archives photo 272)
Glimspes of Revelstoke’s past for April 8

Local history as recorded by the newspaper of the time

Downtown Revelstoke. (Liam Harrap/Revelstoke Review)
LETTER: Finding Common Ground Through COVID-19

‘How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.’

Alchemy Studio received a ticked from the RCMP on Thursday, April 8, for staying open despite provincial restrictions ordering yoga studios be closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19. (Contributed)
Revelstoke yoga class fined for defying COVID-19 orders

The RCMP were called to the Alchemy Studio on April 8

Burnaby MLA Raj Chouhan presides as Speaker of the B.C. legislature, which opened it spring session April 12 with a speech from the throne. THE CANADIAN PRESS
B.C. NDP promises more health care spending, business support in 2021 budget

John Horgan government to ‘carefully return to balanced budgets’

The Red Pill Rapper performs to the crowd gathered for the Rally For Food Security at Blackburn Park on Saturday, April 10, 2021. (Kristal Burgess Photography)
The Red Pill Rapper performs to the crowd gathered for the Rally For Food Security at Blackburn Park on Saturday, April 10, 2021. (Kristal Burgess Photography)
Suspicion of ‘fake news media’ makes rally uncomfortable for Salmon Arm event photographer

More than 300 people counted at city park for ‘Rally For Food Security’

A lady wears a sticker given out after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count slows after last week’s peak

3,219 new cases since Friday, 18 additional deaths

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

North Cowichan councillor Tek Manhas did not violate the municipality’s code of conduct by posting a sexist meme on Facebook, council concludes. (File photo)
B.C. municipality to take no action against councillor who posted sexist meme

Tek Manhas’s meme doesn’t violate North Cowichan council’s code of conduct, municipality concludes

The former Summerland Asset Development Initiative building on Prairie Valley Road in Summerland was suggested as the site for a temporary transitional housing facility for the community. However, Summerland council has rejected this proposal. (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
Summerland council rejects transitional housing facility

Concerns raised about short timeline and condition of municipally-owned building

Shayla, an 8-pound black and grey Havanese, was stolen from outside a store on Banks Road on Saturday. (Contributed)
Stolen pup located, Kelowna RCMP confirms

Mounties said on April 12 that Shayla, the 8-pound, black and grey Havanese dog, has been located safe and sound

—Image: contributed
Indoor wine tastings still allowed in B.C., not considered a ‘social gathering’

“Tasting is really just part of the retail experience. The analogy I use is you wouldn’t buy a pair of pants without trying them on.”

Penticton Vees continue their winning streak carrying a 5-0 win title as of Sunday night's hockey action. (Cherie Morgan/Cherie Morgan Photography)
Penticton Vees continue winning streak

Sunday night’s 6-1 win has them with five in a row since the start of the season

Most Read