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Hockey Canada’s interim board of directors chair resigns amid scandal

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Hockey Canada interim board chair resigns amid sex scandal
WATCH: Hockey Canada interim board chair resigns amid sex scandal – Oct 9, 2022

Hockey Canada‘s interim board of directors chair resigned from her position, effective immediately, on Saturday evening, the national sports body announced.

“Upon reflection, it is clear to me from recent events that it no longer makes sense for me to continue to volunteer my time as Interim Chair or as a Director of the organization,” Andrea Skinner said in a statement.

Skinner, who was appointed to the position only two months ago, leaves as uproar grows over Hockey Canada’s handling of sexual abuse allegations.

“As a Board, we wish Andrea well and would like to thank her for her service to Hockey Canada. We will continue to meet over the weekend to discuss other changes and reforms to the organization,” said Hockey Canada.

Her predecessor, Michael Brind’Amour, resigned in early August, ahead of his term this fall.

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Since May, Hockey Canada has been under intense scrutiny, after it was revealed that an undisclosed settlement had been paid to a woman who alleged in a $3.55-million lawsuit she was sexually assaulted by eight players – including members of the country’s world junior team – in London, Ont., in 2018.

It has also come to light that the organization kept a fund partly maintained by minor hockey registration fees to pay for uninsured liabilities, including sexual assault and abuse claims.

Since 1989, Hockey Canada has paid out $7.6 million in nine settlements related to sexual assault and abuse claims, not including this year’s payout to the London plaintiff, organization officials testified on Parliament Hill in July.

In court this week, Skinner said hockey shouldn’t be made “scapegoat” for toxic culture that exists elsewhere in society.

Multiple governing bodies including Hockey New Brunswick, the Ontario Hockey Federation, Hockey Quebec, and Hockey Nova Scotia have all cut ties with the federal association.

Meanwhile, a growing list of top-tier sponsors including Nike, Telus Corp., Scotiabank, Tim Hortons and Canadian Tire Corp., have also pulled their support in recent days.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has also said the federal government could step in and allow a new national body to replace the scandal-plagued association.

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Hockey Canada’s board said wish Skinner well and thanked her for her “service,”

“We will continue to meet over the weekend to discuss other changes and reforms to the organization,” said Hockey Canada.

-With files from The Canadian Press

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