Allegations in the Media - January 2023

Posted on: January 23, 2023

CMFSC members and the sports community may be aware of allegations of racial abuse in the media on January 20, 2023, calling into question Coquitlam Metro-Ford’s conduct and response to the allegations.

CMFSC fully embraces BC Soccer’s statements and policies regarding Safe Sport: ( Our investigation has included many interviews and statements from team and game officials, players, spectators, and independent observers. We have also reviewed video footage from the game.

The club has prepared the statement below to summarize the events and the process we have followed:

Coquitlam Metro-Ford Soccer Club (CMFSC) holds itself to the highest standards, especially regarding safety and inclusion.  The club’s stance that there is no place for racism or abuse of any form has been reaffirmed in communication with players, parents, and team officials.  The club has been diligent, transparent, empathetic, and aggressive in pursuing our internal investigation.

The game in question occurred Oct. 15th. We learned of the concerns on Oct. 16th, took immediate action communicating to all parties, including Greater Vancouver United Sports Club, BCSSL, BC Soccer and BC Soccer’s independent judicial body. There were no individuals directly identified (players, team officials, or spectators) in the allegations we received from GVUSC.

We met with CMFSC team officials and players, match officials, spectators, and parents, explaining the gravity of the accusations, collecting statements, and reviewing game video/audio. The video (with audio), filmed in the stands, does not support the claims of spectator misconduct. The referee and assistant referees reports and interviews provided no independent validation of player misconduct.

Given our understanding of due process in such matters, allegations, particularly such serious allegations, must be supported by greater substance.

We communicated our findings to GVUSC on Oct. 21st indicating there was insufficient evidence to substantiate the allegations and suggested the independent services of Communities Embracing Restorative Action (CERA) to support both parties collaborating to address the allegations. We understood and supported BC Soccer’s independent judicial body review of the complaint by GVUSC.

ITP Sport, on behalf of BC Soccer’s independent judicial body, communicated on Nov 16th that CMFSC’s internal review was extensive, taken seriously and offered a collaborative engagement process facilitated by CERA.

CMFSC remains committed to addressing the allegations and participating in any independent investigation to ensure sport is safe for all.

Contact: Alex Barnetson, President (Volunteer)
Coquitlam Metro-Ford Soccer Club