FORT MCMURRAY — The Fort McMurray Minor Hockey Association has apologized after a video of three players doing an Indigenous dance in a locker room caused an uproar.
In the video, a boy is seen beating his hockey stick against a trash can lid as he and others jump around and shout to Indigenous music.
The video posted on Facebook has been shared thousands of times.
One person who watched the video called it pathetic.
Another person says white people really need to stop mocking Indigenous culture.
The association says it is devastated by the disrespectful actions of members of the Midget A team.
“It is wrong and will not be tolerated,” the association said in a statement. “The display of ignorance is sad and gravely unfortunate.”
The association said it will deal with the players swiftly and the response will include education to drive home how wrong their actions were.
“We are sick to know how many people this hurts and offends and for that we sincerely apologize on their behalf.”
On Facebook, a boy who claims to be in the video said the three players are Indigenous.
“I would just like to say I am deeply sorry for the actions we made and to clarify we were not trying to be racist or offending anyone or anything,” he wrote.
“This video was us fooling around in the locker room and we weren’t using our heads.”
Jed Johns, an Indigenous relations consultant, said their ethnicity is not the point.
“I don’t think it matters if they’re Indigenous or not,” he said Tuesday. “It definitely stirs an emotional response.”