-Brendan Pawliw, My PG Now
Controversy is swirling at the BC Summer Games in Prince George.
This morning (Saturday), players, coaches and parents of the Zone 4 Fraser River boys soccer team arrived at the Rotary Fields visibly upset after being notified they were kicked out of the BC Summer Games due to reported code of conduct violations.
This also attracted the presence of the Prince George RCMP.
The team made up of kids mostly from the Surrey-area were one of the favorites to win the tournament after a pair of victories against North West and Kootenay regions.
When the team arrived to play its morning matchup against Vancouver-Coastal they were told they had been kicked out.
Shareen Chauhan, whose son Aaryan plays on the Fraser River squad is demanding answers as to what portions of the code of conduct were violated.
“We are seeking clarification as to what parts of the code on conduct that they did break. There has been lots of allegations that the boys made a mess on the bus, which they rectified and cleaned.”
“The kids are being told they are not allowed to participate in the events after the games and told to go to their rooms, they are being told that they need a monitor when they are changing their clothes and are not allowed to go to bathroom by themselves, they have to go in groups of two with the doors open.”
“There are teams going around saying they are Zone 4 getting our kids in trouble. So, we want to know what kind of investigation is being done and why we are being disqualified.”
Chauhan also questioned the need for the police presence just ahead of the morning slate of games.
“Do we need four police cars for just 18 kids who just want to watch a soccer game, now that they have been disqualified? We as parents also want to support their mental health as well as they feel really badly about what has happened.”
“The investigation needs to continue because there are other zones and why aren’t other zones being penalized for similar behaviour. Why just Zone 4?”
Fraser River was victorious in its tournament opener winning 19-0 against North West.
Chauhan noted once the score got to double-digits a meeting was held with the referees and committee members during halftime on how to make the game less of a blowout.
She added the team did rollover its lineup, but that did little to stop any scoring chances from occurring.
“We made our defence play forward, we had our forwards play defence just so we could keep the ball away and not continue scoring. We did try to implement all these measures but we still won 19-0. The coaches never told our kids to stop playing once the score got to 5-0 and there were lots of rumors we should have abandoned the game but you can’t do that. You need to finish the game so that the other teams don’t feel as embarrassed either.”
“I don’t feel that kids should be penalized for playing a competitive sport at the BC Summer Games when at the end, it may come down to two competitive teams, goals for and against might come into play if they are on the same level. Even with the investigation going on, we still played our game yesterday (against the Kootenays).”
Chauhan also referenced a few of their kids were told not to go into the pool at the nearby Aquatic Centre, as it was explained to them it was a paid facility.
“There were some allegations that our kids assaulted the manager. When our coach Gabriel spoke to the manager, he confirmed no such thing took place and that nobody touched him.”
Ben Faloure, whose son Kabir who also suits up for Fraser River told MyPGNow.com they are still searching for a valid reason as to why the team is no longer competing.
“There was no reason. They said they broke the code of conduct. We would like to know what conduct. Did they break any windows? Did they drink or do any drugs? They are 14-year-old kids and we need to know what’s the reason.”
“There is no recourse for us as parents,” added Chauran. “The BC Summer Games has decided and there is no going back but our kids need an explanation. Our kids keep saying they got escorted to the washroom and they left the doors open when they went to change. It was almost like they were in a jail.”
Faloure would also like to see PG Mayor Lyn Hall step up to the plate and provide an explanation on the matter.
“Is this what BC Soccer Games are? Most of the parents are here for the first time and what are they and the kids going to think about this afterwards? I wanna ask the mayor about this too. Give us a reason as to why we were disqualified.”
“Why are the parents not allowed to watch the other games?”
BC Games Society statement concerning Culture of the Games violations and discipline:
Due to multiple breaches of the BC Games Culture of the Games and Code of Conduct by Zone 4 Boys Soccer, the BC Games Society and BC Soccer have made the joint decision to immediately remove the team from the Games and send them home early on Games transportation. This verdict follows an extensive investigation by both organizations that included interviews with players and coaches.
The BC Games Culture of the Games clearly outlines the expectations of those associated with the Games and details their role in creating a positive, respectful, inclusive, and accessible environment. Prior to the Games, all participants are required to complete a Culture of the Games Module that conveys the BC Games Code of Conduct and dictates the standard to which all participants will be held while at the Games.
According to a Games spokesperson, a meeting between BC Games representatives and the parents is underway this afternoon.