Why Is There A Shortage of Officials In Youth Hockey

Coaches screaming obscenities from the bench, parents in the stands ridiculing every call or mis-call made or missed all game long.

Sound familiar? Youth hockey everywhere in North America is suffering from a major shortage of man power in zebra stripes. Simply put, if you don’t have thick skin this isn’t the job for you

Why? Youth hockey is bigger than ever and opportunity abounds…..

There really isn’t a reason to ask why, they hear it every game from the stands and from the bench. Referee’s are not perfect, nobody is and more importantly this isn’t their day job, there’s no reason for them to consistently be treated poorly. They’re volunteers who willingly offer their free time to step away from their family and personal obligations to ensure our games are played.

End result, nobody likes being treated poorly and constantly criticized for every decision they make, good or bad. It gets old and wears thin on their patience quickly.

We have a widespread critical shortage of officials in high school and youth sports. A large part of the reason why is because of us coaches, players & fans. We can’t play, coach or watch the games without officials. It’s not resigned to youth hockey, it’s everywhere; baseball, soccer, basketball, football…..and so on. It’s competitive nature to want to question or comment on every decision but let these guys and girls do their jobs. They get paid next to nothing and there is no obligation for them to continue if they decide it’s no longer worth it.

Let’s all do our part to make the officials’ workplace a place they want to be, not runaway from.

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