Gymnastics Ontario Membership Suspension Notices

Posted: Tuesday, November 8, 2022

Gymnastics Ontario is aware of criminal charges filed today against Sarah Nicholson. Gymnastics Ontario commenced proceedings against Ms. Nicholson in October 2022, in advance of criminal charges being filed, and after it received information concerning Ms. Nicholson. As part of its Complaint, Gymnastics Ontario placed Ms. Nicholson under immediate interim suspension from all its activities.

 

A Discipline Panel has been appointed under Gymnastics Ontario’s Discipline and Complaints Policy to hear Gymnastics Ontario’s Complaint against Ms. Nicholson.

 

Requests for further information should be sent to Dave Sandford, Gymnastics Ontario’s Chief Executive Officer.

 

 

Posted: Friday, December 10, 2021

David Harris of Oakville, Ontario has been suspended for a period of two (2) years from membership with Gymnastics Ontario effective July 1, 2021 and in accordance with Gymnastics Ontario’s Discipline and Complaints Policy.

 

Currently, Gymnastics Ontario has policies that are in place for the screening of employees, coaches, judges, support staff, and volunteers that travel and work with the athletes in our sport, however, we continue to review and update our policies and procedures to ensure that they meet our commitment to safe sport and minimize risks to our participants.

 

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact our Chief Executive Officer, Dave Sandford

 

 

Posted: Thursday, November 4, 2021

Effective immediately, Marcel Rene has been placed under interim suspension by Gymnastics Ontario. The interim suspension may be challenged by Mr. Rene before a Discipline Panel. Mr. Rene is not to have any contact with members of Gymnastics Ontario, in relation to Gymnastics Ontario matters, while the suspension is in effect.

This includes all ‘Field of Play’ activities involving Gymnastics Ontario or Champions Gymnastics Inc. including;

 

  1.   Coaching of athletes;
  2.   Training of athletes;
  3.   Attending trials, training camps, competitions or any other competitive events
  4.   In no case shall Marcel Rene be permitted to directly communicate with or contact     Champions Gymnastics students, parents, staff, employees, contractors with regard to any ‘Field of Play’ or operational issues;
  5.  Marcel Rene is not permitted to be onsite when classes are going on, or there is staff onsite.

If you have any questions, concerns, or are aware of any violations to the Field of Play activities please contact our Chief Executive Officer, Dave Sandford.

 

Posted: Thursday, November 4, 2021

On October 1, 2021, Marcel Rene agreed to a lifetime suspension from Gymnastics Ontario, as set out in the suspension notice posted on November 1, 2021.

 

The lifetime suspension arose following complaints received by Gymnastics Ontario. Out of respect for the complainants, Gymnastics Ontario is unable to provide particulars in respect of the matters that were raised in the complaints. Gymnastics Ontario can confirm that when the complaints were made known to it, they were investigated, and promptly dealt with. Gymnastics Ontario can further confirm that the individuals affected by the allegations made against Mr. Rene were involved in the complaints process, including its resolution.

 

Mr. Rene’s suspension is effective January 1, 2022 to permit him to divest himself of effective control of Champions Gymnastics. Gymnastics Ontario has not been apprised of any information that suggests there is any risk of harm to its members in permitting Mr. Rene a brief period of time to remove himself from Champions’ operations.

 

Gymnastics Ontario is committed to creating and maintaining a safe sport environment. Gymnastics Ontario invites its members and its stakeholders to report to it any behavior that fails to uphold these values. If Gymnastics Ontario is able to provide any further information about this matter in the future, it will do so.

 

 

Posted: Monday, November 1, 2021

Please be advised that Marcel Rene of Peterborough, Ontario has been suspended for life from membership with Gymnastics Ontario effective January 1, 2022 and in accordance with Gymnastics Ontario’s Discipline and Complaints Policy. Mr. Rene’s suspension covers all coaching and field of play activities, as well as in respect of operating Champions Gymnastics in Peterborough, other than through his son, Étienne.

 

Currently, Gymnastics Ontario has policies that are in place for the screening of employees, coaches, judges, support staff, and volunteers that travel and work with the athletes in our sport, however, we continue to review and update our policies and procedures to ensure that they meet our commitment to safe sport and minimize risks to our participants.

 

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact our Chief Executive Officer, Dave Sandford.

 

 

Posted: Friday, March 19, 2021

Gymnastics Canada statement regarding the outcome of the David and Elizabeth Brubaker discipline hearing | OTTAWA, ON (March 19, 2021) – Gymnastics Canada (GymCan) acknowledges and accepts the decision reached by an independent discipline panel regarding formal written complaints received by GymCan against two elite coaches – David (Dave) Brubaker and Elizabeth (Liz) Brubaker. The decision was received by all parties on Friday, March 12th, 2021.

Dave Brubaker was formerly the National Team Director for GymCan’s women’s artistic gymnastics national team and was suspended on December 15, 2017 after being charged by the police with multiple offences. While he was acquitted in the criminal process, his suspension was extended and an internal investigation commenced in light of written complaints received by GymCan. Liz Brubaker was provisionally suspended on January 18th, 2019 following the receipt of written complaints by GymCan while she was an elite coach at Bluewater Gymnastics Club in Sarnia, ON.

The discipline panel for this case, chaired by Mr. Daniel Ratushny, held that Dave and Liz Brubaker did breach the relevant organizational Code of Ethics and Conduct policies that were in effect during the time frame when the events occurred (1996-2017).

The Panel ruled that Dave Brubaker is permanently banned and prohibited from any future application or attempt to gain reinstatement, membership, or any other status with Gymnastics Canada member associations or clubs.

The Panel further ruled that Liz Brubaker’s suspension is extended until January 18, 2024, pending the completion of imposed reinstatement conditions.

Respecting that there remains a 15-day appeal period for the Respondents, GymCan will not comment further on the details of the decision until the appeal process is complete.

“On behalf of Gymnastics Canada, I want to thank the Panel for their detailed and diligent work to prepare their decision, and I want to express my gratitude to the athlete complainants for their cooperation, patience, and bravery throughout this very arduous process,” said Ian Moss, CEO of Gymnastics Canada. “Gymnastics Canada will provide more details surrounding this investigation once the appeal process is complete.”

To reach this outcome, GymCan engaged in a comprehensive process based on organizational policies that commenced with internal review and a professional assessment of the written complaints by the organization’s third-party Harassment Officer and legal counsel. Upon receiving their recommendation to initiate an investigation into the formal complaints, GymCan secured an independent legal expert with extensive practice in the field of workplace investigations, human rights, and administrative law to conduct a neutral investigation.

The investigator interviewed witnesses for both parties, including Dave and Liz Brubaker, and delivered a report detailing the facts of the case against the relevant Codes of Ethics and Conduct. Upon reception and review of the investigator’s report, GymCan’s third-party Harassment Officer formally registered the complaints and directed the case to be heard by an independent discipline panel in accordance with GymCan’s policies.

At this time, GymCan secured a legal expert with experience facilitating disciplinary proceedings in sport to serve as Case Manager. The Case Manager then constructed an independent discipline panel composed of two lawyers and a gymnastics expert who  heard evidence presented by both parties, to reach a decision regarding the alleged policy breaches, and direct sanctions to be imposed by GymCan. The final decision reached by the discipline panel followed a disciplinary hearing that took place from September 3-17, 2020 with closing submissions completed on October 9, 2020.

GymCan recognizes that ensuring a fair, neutral, and thorough process takes time and we thank all parties for their patience, cooperation, and engagement in this process. To respect the privacy of all parties involved, Gymnastics Canada will not make any further statements until the completion of the appeals process and ask that the privacy and confidentiality of all individuals involved be respected.

GymCan embraces our responsibility to take a leadership role in fostering positive, healthy, and fulfilling gymnastics environments. Together with our provincial members, we continue to implement Safe Sport policy, education, and advocacy initiatives with the safety and well-being of all participants at the forefront. For more information, please visit: http://gymcan.org/programs/safe-sport/overview

 

Posted:  Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Ms. Rima Nikishin has been suspended indefinitely by the Alberta Gymnastics Federation after the completion of a Code of Conduct investigation and subsequent Discipline Committee sanction – she is no longer a member in good standing with the AGF.  Through the national reciprocity agreement, Gymnastics Canada and all affiliated Provincial and Territorial member organizations are required to respect the AGF decision and not allow Ms. Nikoshin membership within their organization until further notice.

 

Posted:  Thursday, January 24, 2019

Gymnastics Canada and Gymnastics Ontario have received a number of written formal complaints against a national level coach that outlined alleged violations of Gymnastics Canada’s Ethics and Code of Conduct policies over an extended period of time a number of years ago. On Friday, January 18th, Mrs. Elizabeth Brubaker (Bluewater Gymnastics Club – Sarnia, ON) was provisionally suspended by Gymnastics Canada, Gymnastics Ontario and the Bluewater Gymnastics Club.

 

Posted:  Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Please be advised that Ms. Elisha Oakes of Niagara Falls, Ontario has been suspended from membership with Gymnastics Ontario effectively immediately from all coaching, judging, events and activities pending the outcome of a disciplinary hearing scheduled in mid-April in accordance with our Discipline, Complaints and Harassment policies.

Currently, Gymnastics Ontario has policies that are in place for the screening of employees, coaches, judges, support staff, and volunteers that travel and work with the athletes in our sport, however, we continue to review and update our policies and procedures to ensure that they meet our commitment to safe sport and minimize risks to our participants.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact our Chief Executive Officer, Dave Sandford

 

Posted:  Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Gymnastics Ontario takes our commitment to the safety of our community extremely seriously. When issues involving Mr. McFarlane first came to our attention, we immediately suspended Mr. McFarlane in October 2017.

Gymnastics Ontario has been in contact with those who have been affected by this situation and continue to offer our support.

In January 2018, Investigators from Peel Region Police were contacted by the victim, a 15 year-old female from the Region of Peel, to report multiple sex related criminal incidents.

Anyone with information in relation to this incident is asked to contact investigators at the Special Victims Unit at 905-453-2121, ext. 3460. Anonymous information may also be submitted by calling Peel Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), by visiting www.peelcrimestoppers.ca or by sending a text message to CRIMES (274637) with the word “PEEL” and then your tip.

Currently, Gymnastics Ontario has policies that are in place for the screening of employees, coaches, judges, support staff, and volunteers that travel and work with the athletes in our sport, however, we continue to review and update our policies and procedures to ensure that they meet our commitment to safe sport and minimize risks to our participants.

 

Posted:  Friday, January 26, 2018

Effective immediately, Scott McFarlane is suspended indefinitely under Gymnastics Ontario By-Law 5.5b.

Currently, Gymnastics Ontario has policies that are in place for the screening of employees, coaches, judges, support staff and volunteers that travel and work with the athletes in our sport, however, we continue to review and update our policies and procedures to ensure that they meet our commitment to safe sport and minimize risks to our participants.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact our Chief Executive Officer, Dave Sandford

 

Posted:  Sunday, December 17, 2017

Please be advised that effective immediately, Mr. Dave Brubaker of Sarnia, Ontario has been suspended from membership with Gymnastics Ontario in accordance with our policies following the serious charges that have been made on December 15, 2017 pending the outcome of this investigation.

Currently, Gymnastics Ontario has policies that are in place for the screening of employees, coaches, judges, support staff, and volunteers that travel and work with the athletes in our sport, however, we continue to review and update our policies and procedures to ensure that they meet our commitment to safe sport and minimize risks to our participants.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact our Chief Executive Officer, Dave Sandford

 

Posting for Friday, December 22, 2017

Please be advised that Mr. Scott McFarlane of Mississauga, Ontario has been suspended from membership with Gymnastics Ontario for three months ending on January 26, 2018 in accordance with our Discipline, Complaints and Harassment policy. Mr. McFarlane’s Gymnastics Ontario membership will be reinstated on January 27, 2018on a probationary basis for a period of one year.

Currently, Gymnastics Ontario has policies that are in place for the screening of employees, coaches, judges, support staff, and volunteers that travel and work with the athletes in our sport, however, we continue to review and update our policies and procedures to ensure that they meet our commitment to safe sport and minimize risks to our participants.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact Dave Sandford

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