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Memorial Arena honoured for helmet policy

- April 22, 2013

Representatives from six of the 10 Nova Scotia arenas were on hand to receive their awards at Shannon Park Arena on April 17. (Photo Credit: Communications Nova Scotia)
Representatives from six of the 10 Nova Scotia arenas were on hand to receive their awards at Shannon Park Arena on April 17. (Photo Credit: Communications Nova Scotia)

Dalhousie University’s Memorial Arena, alongside nine other rinks, was recognized last week by Canadian Tire for having had implemented a mandatory helmet policy in its facility before closing in April 2012.

Canadian Tire awarded $5,000 in gift certificates to the first 10 arenas in Nova Scotia that have voluntarily adopted helmet policies. The money will help with equipment donations to children or arena upgrades. The company plans to recognize 10 more arenas next year.

As of January 1, 2010, it became mandatory for all participants, regardless of age, to wear CSA-approved hockey helmets during all skating sessions held at Dalhousie. Memorial Arena was the first facility of its kind in the province to make helmets mandatory for all age groups at public skates and for ice rentals, a decision intended to assist in the prevention and reduction of head and brain injuries.

Health and Wellness Minister David Wilson was on hand at Shannon Park Arena for the presentations. "Nova Scotia already has the most aggressive helmet laws in the country for cycling and other activities on wheels, as well as for downhill skiing and snowboarding," said Mr. Wilson. "It's great to see arenas adopting helmet policies, and to have community partners encouraging this positive culture change for safer physical activity on the ice."

"We know helmets provide protection for brains of all ages, and we know the tragic costs and consequences of brain injury," said Dr. David Clarke, interim head of neurosurgery and director of neurotrauma and injury prevention programs at the Capital District Health Authority. "Collectively, arenas that adopt an all-age helmet policy are making a difference for improving brain health for all."

Kathie Wheadon-Hore, Dalhousie’s director of facility and business services for athletics and recreational services, indicated that while the arena is no longer open, the award will be used towards safety improvements in another area of the department.

For the latest updates on Dalhousie’s new fitness and recreation facilities: http://bit.ly/17J3Ezg

For more information on Maritime helmet laws: http://bit.ly/ZJtP4l

The first 10 arenas in Nova Scotia to adopt helmet policies:

- Dalhousie University Arena, Halifax
- Rath Eastlink Community Centre, Truro
- Mabou and District Athletic Centre, Inverness
- Glooscap District Arena, Canning
- BMO Centre, Bedford
- Hants Exhibition Arena, Windsor
- Shannon Park Arena, Dartmouth
- Parrsboro Lions Recreation Centre, Parrsboro
- BAYplex, Glace Bay
- Port Hawkesbury Civic Centre, Port Hawkesbury


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