Amateur Sports Organizations in Nova Scotia Unite to Combat Referee and Official Abuse with the Respect the Game, Respect the Officials – Green Armband Initiative   

Amateur sports in Canada are experiencing a troubling decrease in officials, referees, and umpires. This decline can be attributed to the significant amount of abuse directed towards them by athletes, coaches, and spectators. In response to this urgent issue, eight provincial sports organizations have launched a green armband initiative called “Respect the Game, Respect the Officials.”

“The Respect the Game, Respect the Officials” campaign is a powerful reminder to respect and protect the young officials who wear green armbands. Just like the players and coaches, these officials are in the process of learning the game. By cultivating a culture of respect and support, we aim to establish a positive and inclusive environment for everyone involved in sport.

The participating sports organizations include Volleyball Nova Scotia, Basketball Nova Scotia, Rugby Nova Scotia, Softball Nova Scotia, Baseball Nova Scotia, Lacrosse Nova Scotia, and Soccer Nova Scotia.

Soccer Nova Scotia has taken an additional step in the fight against referee and official abuse. Soccer NS has updated its Discipline Code, including standard discipline policies to strengthen discipline sanctions and penalties to protect referees under 18.

The “Respect the Game, Respect the Official” green armband initiative and the updated discipline policies are part of a collective effort to tackle declining retention rates of amateur sports officials, referees, and umpires. By promoting the values of respect and appreciation for the game and its officials, we aim to reverse this trend and ensure a brighter future for all participants.

Join us in supporting the “Respect the Game, Respect the Officials” green armband initiative and help spread the message of #RespectTheGame and #RespectTheOfficials. Together, we can make a difference and create a safe and enjoyable environment for everyone involved in amateur sport.