CTV apologizing for comments made by "The Social" correspondent Jess Allen
TORONTO - CTV says it is apologizing to anyone who was offended by comments made by a correspondent on its show The Social following the firing of hockey commentator Don Cherry.
During the program on Tuesday, Jessica Allen said she doesn't worship at the altar of hockey and found in her experience that those who did "all tended to be white boys who weren't, let's say, very nice.''
She added that they were often bullies.
CTV says Allen's comments generated an extraordinary response.
Many hockey parents expressed their anger.
Among those upset by the comments, was the family of one of the survivors of the Humboldt Broncos bus crash.
In a tweet, Tom Straschnitzki, the father of Ryan Straschnitzki, said he would no longer be accepting interview requests from CTV News reporters, until disciplinary action was taken against Jessica Allen.
The network says it is sorry but added it won't restrict its hosts from offering their opinions on an opinion show.
Allen also issued an apology, saying when she spoke she was referring to hockey players she knew personally when she was in high school and university.
She said Cherry reminded her of those players.
Sportsnet fired Cherry this week following his comments on "Hockey Night in Canada,'' which many felt were critical of immigrants for not wearing Remembrance Day poppies.
According to CTV News Calgary, a spokesperson for CTV said the comments from Allen have sparked a wider discussion from coast-to-coast, but apologized to anyone who was offended by the remarks.
Here's the full statement:
CTV’s The Social is based on opinion and debate about current issues, and we often hear from viewers who don’t agree with some of the perspectives on the show.
However, Jessica Allen’s comments about hockey have generated an extraordinary response. We’ve been touched by the stories we’ve heard from Canadians everywhere, including families from Humboldt, about what the game means to them. That matters to us.
We would like to apologize to everyone who was offended by the remarks, and let you know your feedback sparked much debate and introspection at The Social and CTV. We won’t restrict our hosts from offering their opinions on an opinion show, but we’ll always listen to viewers when they offer theirs.
With files from Heather Seaman and CTV News Calgary