Expand the headings below to view the OVA's policies and their rationale.
Coaches play a vital role in shaping the youth of tomorrow through sport. The OVA relies on them and other persons in authority to be role models and to put young athletes on a path to success. The dynamic between coach and athlete gives rise to a power imbalance and a culture of unquestioned trust that can result in abuse. As such, it is imperative that all persons in positions of authority be held to a high standard of conduct. Abuse in sport, particularly sexual abuse and the grooming behaviour that precedes it, destroys the positive impact of sport and causes untold harm to victims and those around them. Consequently the OVA has a strong obligation to establish and maintain systems that prevent abuse and respond to conduct that poses risk to OVA athletes.
The OVA Tryout Window Policy is designed to alleviate stresses on clubs, athletes and families and to provide all clubs with an equal opportunity to select athletes.
Download the policy:
The OVA is committed to the long term health of our athletes. We work closely with the Ministry of Sport in Ontario to ensure that current and relevant health information is available to our members. For more information on concussion prevention, identification, management and treatment, we invite you to visit the Ministry's Concussion Program webpage.
We also invite you to check out the Holland Bloorview Concussion Centre's Concussion Handbook.
Download the OVA Concussion Policy:
Please also view the following resources from Parachute Canada:
The hitting warm up is an important part of game preparation, however, it does come with some inherent risks for both athletes and spectators. To reduce these risks, the OVA mandates that teams follow these warm up guidelines:
1. Athletes remain on one side of the net during a hitting warm up and those not hitting retrieve the balls on the opposite side.
2. Athletes should not be crossing under the net during hitting warm ups into the direct path of the balls.
3. Athletes should run around the outside of the court to retrieve balls.
4. Designate one side for attacking and one for retrieving. Ask spectators to avoid sitting on the retrieving side during warm up.
5. Hitting should be directed away from courts with active games and from spectator seating if possible
This policy is designed to empower athletes with the freedom of choice when determining their playing situation. It encourages athletes and parents to gather information and make informed decisions concerning the club selection. It demands that all coaches behave ethically in their relationships with athletes, parents and other clubs. It stresses that coaches not initiate transfer discussions with any athlete within the OVA, but it encourages them to respond to inquiries initiated by parents and/or athletes.
Download the Transfer Policy and Procedures on Recruitment:
Screening of personnel and volunteers is an important part of providing a safe sporting environment and has become a common practice among sport organizations that provide programs and services to the community. The OVA is responsible at law, to do everything reasonable to provide a safe and secure environment for participants in its programs, activities and events. The OVA takes very seriously, and is committed to, fulfilling the duty of care it owes to its members.
The OVA requires each person to submit a VSS once every three (3) years from the date of completion (as stamped by the police department), upon which time you must submit a new one. Each person is also required to submit a copy of the OVA Screening Disclosure Form on an annual basis.