Huron Women’s Shelter

The shelter is located in Goderich, Ontario. Its mission:

“At the Huron Women’s Shelter we’re all about providing emergency shelter, housing, support, counselling and advocacy to women, and the best way for us to achieve our goals is through your continued support and contributions. We thank you for your interest and involvement in ending violence against women.”

The shelter serves abused women across Huron County. That includes Clinton, the town where convicted rapist, Mitchell Vandergunst, is playing senior hockey for the Radars during the 2015-16 season.

Clinton’s most distinguished resident is the writer, Alice Munro. In 2013, Ms. Munro won the Nobel Prize for Literature. She also supports the Huron Women’s Shelter through The Alice Munro Fund.

The Local Team

Written by Andrew Prest, this project explores how sports journalists at the local, provincial, and national level covered the career of Graham James, a junior hockey coach who was convicted of sexually assaulting two of his players.

Crossing the Line: Violence and Sexual Assault in Canada’s National Sport

Laura Robinson writes about violence and sexual assault in the secretive world of junior hockey.

Windsor Star: Johnson ‘a good guy,’ former teammate testifies at sex assault trial

Ty Bilcke was a player for the Stratford Cullitons. Club officials dismissed him from the team in early February for supporting his friend and teammate, Mitch Vandergunst. Vandergunst was convicted on two counts of sexually assaulting a young woman.

Bilcke has a history of throwing his lot in with friends accused of rape. This story is about a criminal trial he was involved with in Windsor, Ontario, where he told the court, “I take care of my boys.”

Optimism Place Jazz Chat

Jasmine Clark is an abuse counsellor at the women’s shelter in Goderich, Ontario. On February 14th, 2015, she taught a workshop for Cullitons players and officials. The topic: sexual consent.

Clark says she has a “passion” for educating people about issues such as consent and reporting. She’s a trained social worker, community activist, and the mother of a young boy. She’s also a hockey player (“I’ve been playing since I was five years old”).

RocketGirl’s Blog

Stacy Brooks (a.k.a. RocketGirl) writes a blog about Ontario Junior B hockey. She told me, “I can write about anything and everything to do with Junior B.”

Brooks, who lives in London, Ontario, told me she’d heard about Mitch Vandergunst not long after he was charged with sexually assaulting a young woman, “but I heard it by word of mouth.”

Ontario Hockey Association: Player Information Guide

Each year the Ontario Hockey Association distributes a “Player Information Guide.” It’s referred to by some in the league as “the PIG.”

Of possible interest to readers: a section (pages 8-17) that deals with issues such as abuse and harassment.

Mark Ellis (Executive Director) and Stephen Boscariol (Development Coordinator) are the OHA officials responsible for writing the guide. The guide is available to all member clubs.

A topic we can no longer avoid

A harrowing story: A team of investigative journalism students at St. Thomas University in Fredericton, NB, report on an alleged sexual assault involving a varsity hockey player.

Professor Jan Wong served as the executive editor for the I-Team at STU. Many readers will know about her background as one of Canada’s most decorated journalists. Check here for a feature interview with Jan and Dr. Maxine Ruvinsky.