Lauren Dahm and Boston Blades Set to Host You Can Play Night on February 3

On Saturday February 3, the Boston Blades will be hosting their “You Can Play Night” ahead of their matchup vs. Montreal. They’re aiming to raise awareness for the You Can Play Project and all of the work they do for members of the LGBTQ community and their allies.

You Can Play’s  mission statement reads as follows:

“You Can Play works to ensure the safety and inclusion of all in sports – including LGBTQ athletes, coaches and fans.

You Can Play works to guarantee that athletes are given a fair opportunity to compete, judged by other athletes and fans alike, only by what they contribute to the sport or their team’s success.

You Can Play seeks to challenge the culture of locker rooms and spectator areas by focusing only on an athlete’s skills, work ethic and competitive spirit.”

Since their partnership with the CWHL back in 2012, You Can Play has partnered with various leagues and organizations such as the National Hockey League and the NHL’s Player Association, Major League Soccer, the Canadian Football League, and the National Women’s Hockey League.

In the original press release about the CWHL partnership it states, the “You Can Play Project will work with the CWHL to find new and creative ways to ensure that lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, and transgender athletes are ensured a safe environment, free from homophobic language and other actions that may contribute to athletes feeling uncomfortable or unsafe.”

Boston’s starting goaltender, Lauren Dahm, recently spoke of what the CWHL and You Can Play’s ongoing partnership means to her.

“Women’s hockey has a notable amount of people who identify as members of the LGBTQ community. The fact that the CWHL was the first league to partner with You Can Play shows it’s commitment to leading the way in making sure all their players feel supported,” Dahm stated.

“It is a great example of the incredible pioneers and advocates for the players of which the CWHL is comprised. This continued partnership is beneficial to both groups because while You Can Play promotes acceptance of all athletes, coaches, and staff, I feel as though these members of the CWHL are incredible representatives of the community that the You Can Play team can be proud to support as well,” Dahm said.

She also spoke highly of those in the women’s hockey community for their acceptance of one another both on the ice, in the locker room, and in the community.

“The diversity on women’s hockey teams, I think, helps players be more accepting of different types of people they meet throughout life. This acceptance comes from the top of the league and it transcends to the staff, coaches, players and fans. We are lucky to have people who have shared about their personal lives publicly, like Jessica Platt, Charline Labonte, and Julie Chu, just to name a few,” Dahm said.

“I think for some fans or people more on the outside looking in, it might be challenging to recognize the impact that women’s hockey has on the LGBTQ community and vice versa, since for as many ‘out’ members there are, there are many others who also identify as LGBTQ, {but have not come out}. This is completely okay because people come out, or don’t, at their own pace,” she also stated.

Dahm was also sure to note the impact the league’s had in supporting their athletes.

“…knowing the CWHL as a whole is so supportive of the LGBTQ community within the league helps people to know they are not alone and that who they are is more than good enough. Seeing the league advocating and applauding these brave athletes who have shared their stories shows they also support the countless others who identify as LGBTQ perhaps more privately,” she continued. “On personal levels and within the tight-knit community, women’s hockey possesses a bond between those who identify as LGBTQ as well as our straight ally teammates and peers, so that definitely contributes to the camaraderie and safe space culture we feel.”

Dahm is looking forward to the opportunity for the Blades to interact with LGBTQ in the Winthrop community and beyond, as well as raise more awareness for the You Can Play Project and their mission. She also noted how proud she is of the CWHL for hosting these games annually as Boston participated in the You Can Play game last year in Calgary.

Dahm closed by highlighting what’s truly important about the sport she loves and why organizations such as You Can Play are vital partners to the CWHL.

“When you come to the rink, step on the ice, score a sick goal, make a beauty of a save, you’re simply a hockey player. I think this 100 percent embodies the You Can Play team’s mission of proving that ‘if you can play, you can play.’ The sport is what it is all about and anyone who is able to play, should be able to, and they should feel completely fine being their true self while doing so,” she concluded.

Tickets to the Blades and Les Canadiennes “You Can Play” game for February 3 can be purchased online or at the door on game day. It will be played on Boston’s home ice, Larsen Rink in Winthrop, MA.

Merisa Boyd is the Media Relations Manager for the Boston Blades. All media inquiries and requests should be sent to [email protected].com.