The ForTheGame movement announced their players association on May 20, named the Professional Women’s Hockey Players Association (PWHPA), in a rebrand of the former CWHLPA.
The goal of the association, per their statement, is to promote and support “the creation of a single, viable women’s professional league in North America.” They want to assist players in being able to train if they are unable to find a league and to help with sponsorship opportunities.
The statement is the most detailed one to date from this group, laying out what they are looking for as well as the explicit idea of not playing in the fall.
“We are prepared to stop playing for a year — which is crushing to even think about — because we know how important a sustainable league will be to the future of women’s sports,” Shannon Szabados said in the release.
“PWHPA members are looking for a professional league that will provide financial and infrastructure resources to players; protect and support their rights and talents; provide health insurance; and work with companies, business leaders, and sports professionals worldwide who already have voiced support for women’s hockey.”
“The PWHPA is looking for a league that also will provide support to training programs for young female players, promote diversity and inclusion at all levels of play, and raise awareness of hockey as a sport that is open to all.”
The announcement came via another coordinated social media post, with all players posting the word “Unity” with the hashtag #ForTheGame, a link to a release, and the logo of the new association.
The link to the release was dead for many at the scheduled release time, but players also posted on Instagram.
Many players have posted a full statement on Instagram as well. pic.twitter.com/EKavuhwTSI— The Ice Garden (@TheIceGarden) May 20, 2019
The players are working with Ballard Spahr, the same law firm that assisted the 2017 US National Team boycott.