Allegations of misconduct within women’s hockey program at Western University under review

Western University in London, Ont., has confirmed it has launched independent reviews over “concerns relating to the women’s hockey program.”

The statement follows reporting from TSN alleging the reviews are over claims of improper conduct raised against head coach Candice Moxley and Western’s strength and conditioning coach Jeff Watson.

“The safety of our students always comes first and Western has rigorous processes for reviewing and addressing formal complaints,” Western said in a statement.

“With the assistance of an external investigator, the university has launched independent reviews to look closely at these matters, and to hear from all impacted parties. As always, these kinds of reviews are confidential, to respect the privacy of all individuals involved.”

A spokesperson with the London Police Service, when asked whether it is involved in any investigations related to the women’s hockey program, said, “We have not received any reports.”

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The reviews are the latest in a reckoning over allegations of a toxic culture in organized sports.

Hockey Canada has faced intense scrutiny since May 2022 when it was revealed the organization quietly settled a lawsuit after a woman claimed she was sexually assaulted by eight players, including members of the country’s world junior team, following a 2018 gala in London, Ont.

The fallout led to revelations about Hockey Canada’s National Equity Fund (NEF), which is maintained by registration fees and used to pay for uninsured liabilities, including sexual assault and abuse claims.

Hockey Canada then announced members of the 2003 men’s world junior roster were being investigated for a group sexual assault.

None of the allegations have been proven in court.

— with files from The Canadian Press’ Gregory Strong.

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