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Youth hockey world must be compelled to cooperate with virus protocols

The list of things that have infuriated me during these pandemic months is long indeed, from the callous ineptitude on display at the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home to the president’s endless series of super-spreader rallies. But the reports of selfishness and stupidity in the local youth hockey community really made my blood boil (“Baker ties virus spike to people under 30,” Page A1, Oct. 28).

It’s bad enough that families and coaches insisted on engaging in a crowded indoor activity in a cold, dry space (ideal conditions for the spread of the coronavirus), but now we read claims that that they are stonewalling contact tracers. To what purpose? They can’t possibly think this will help them get back on the ice any sooner.


This should not be tolerated. Rink owners must insist that the leagues and teams who use these facilities cooperate fully with public health authorities or lose access to the rinks for good. And, because such a response runs counter to rink owners’ financial interests, local health authorities must insist that the rinks may not open until they take such action. Further, mask-wearing and social distancing (off the ice) must be enforced.

With COVID-19, we all pay when groups who think they are above the rules won’t follow them. The public should not put up with it.

Nancy Waters