BOSTON – Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker said “irresponsible” parents and coaches were the reason he had to make the “drastic” decision to close down skating rinks for two weeks in the state.
Last Friday, the Baker administration ordered all skating rinks closed in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts through November 7. The administration said it had linked more than 100 COVID-19 cases to youth hockey and skating rinks.
“There have been at least 30 clusters of COVID-19 associated with organized ice hockey activities involving residents from more than 60 municipalities in Massachusetts,” said the state.
Today, during a press conference Gov. Baker said because some parents and coaches did not cooperate with state contact tracers, and a couple of coaches refused to team rosters to the state’s contract tracing team, he had to make the decision to close the rinks for 2 weeks.
“I know the shutdown wasn’t welcome news, but youth hockey needs to make some changes,” the Governor said during a press conference today.
Gov. Baker said the state Department of Public Health found more than 30 clusters and over 110 positive cases, 22 probable cases and 220 close contacts in 20 rinks across the state. Overall, he said 66 cities and towns were impacted, including the City of Framingham.
Framingham Health Director Sam Wong told SOURCE Friday, October 23, “Framingham is complying with the Commissioner of Public Health’s Order to suspend all ice skating and hockey activities.”
Wong said, as of Friday morning, “we have 5 known confirmed cases among Framingham residents linked to hockey activities, as part of a cluster associated with a facility outside of Framingham. At this point, we don’t have any known confirmed case associated with Loring Arena.”
New Hampshire also closed its skating rinks recently.