Thursday, February 29, 2024

Lack of referees in hockey leagues in Quebec

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Alan Binder
Alan Binder
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We still recruit a lot of young people every year, […] But we lose a lot in years of experience, summarizes Mark Lauer, Senior Regional Arbitrator at Outaouais.

It is estimated that 25% of officials will leave this year and about 85% of them represent people with 5-10 years of experience behind the tie, sometimes more.

Since we are losing veterans, we have no choice but to raise the youth level faster than expected. Loyer notes, referring to the newcomers who find themselves ruling higher-level matches.

He explains that reorganizations are being made to ensure that these young people are well supervised in their learning. These recruits are supervised by line judges.

We want to stay accountable. We don’t want them to decide to leave after a tough game.

Quote from:Mark Lauer, Chief Regional Arbitrator for Ottawa

Mark Lauer, Chief Provincial Arbitrator for the Ottawa Region.

Photo: Radio Canada

Multifactorial retention issues

Charles Roman, who has been a referee in the area for about five years, states that the annoying and even aggressive behavior of viewers at times plays on the morale of young people who are starting out in the profession.

I see young people who are starting and making a lot of sense. The homes for the elderly are to try to protect them as much as possible , Confirms.

He agrees that a salary that varies from arbitration level and from region to region can encourage many to leave the ship.

Oftentimes, we make around $25 Game. We’re here for two and a half hours, or so. We arrived half an hour ago [le match] We leave in half an hour, he explains.

Thus, some young rulers may calculate that they will make more money working in fast food restaurants, for example.

In terms of income, many speakers noted that the tax payments being applied discourage some from continuing in the profession.

Hockey Quebec recently recognized the hockey official profession as a freelance job. This means that seasoned arbitrators who have never had to fill out a T4A form, when filing your annual tax return, will have to do so.

For some people, this is annoying, so they quit for exactly that , believes Richard Trotier, the refereeing director of the Quebec Junior Hockey League (QMJHL).

Two QMJHL referees during the Sherbrooke Phoenix game

Two QMJHL referees during the Sherbrooke Phoenix game

Photo: Radio Canada / ICI Estrie / Carl Marchand

In his opinion, the health crisis will also have a role. At some point, the epidemic will resolve on its own and the regions will find the number of officials they need , pridect.

He says the lack of referees doesn’t really affect me LHJMQ, where she finds herself at The pinnacle of the amateur hockey pyramid .

In any case, many referees testify that they continue to practice their profession for the love of hockey.

With information from Rémi Authier

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