Rugby Ontario COVID-19 FAQ

Last Updated: June 3, 2020


On April 3, 2020, Rugby Canada and Rugby Ontario announced an indefinite suspension of all sanctioned rugby activities with further clarification coming no later than June 30, 2020. As the situation evolves Rugby Ontario will continue to follow the orders and advice of Rugby Canada, all levels of government and public health authorities. The following is a series of frequently asked questions to provide clarity on various topics, based on the information available. The Rugby Ontario staff will keep this FAQ document updated as best as we can.

1. Competitions: Club Rugby

What is the status of the various provincial leagues and competitions, such as the Marshall League, OWL and Junior leagues?
At the present time, Rugby Ontario continues to monitor the situation and the Emergency Orders of the Ontario Government and public health authorities.  We are actively working on ‘Return to Play’ protocols in conjunction with Rugby Canada. However, it is very unlikely the provincial leagues will take place in 2020.
Will Rugby Ontario plan to run other provincial events such as OWL Cup Day, Jr. Cup Day, McCormick Cup, Fall 7s Series and Minor Festival?
At this time it is very unlikely these provincial events will be able to take place in 2020. As the situation develops we will look at various ways that we can bring the Ontario rugby community together in a safe manner that aligns with the Emergency Orders of the Ontario Government and the directions from public health authorities.

Once the Rugby Canada suspension is lifted, can we play straight away?

This is to be outlined in the Return to Play strategy which is being developed by Rugby Canada in consultation with the Provincial Unions. Once the Rugby Canada suspension is lifted each individual province will be responsible for adhering to the national RTP strategy as well as the directions from all levels of government and public health authorities.

2. Minor Rugby and Rookie Rugby

Is the Minor Festival season cancelled?

It is very unlikely that the Minor Festivals season will take place. Rugby Ontario will continue to look for ways to engage the minor community while taking into account the Emergency Orders of the Ontario Government and the directions from public health authorities.  If you have any further questions please contact Ryan Jones at

Will the Canada Summer Job Interns/ Community Rugby Interns be impacted by the current situation?

Rugby Ontario is actively working with Service Canada to change the parameters of the 2020 Canada Summer Jobs Internship Program. We have applied to amend the timing of the internships to begin on November 30th and run for 12 weeks commencing on February 28th, the latest possible end date for interns under the flexibility allowed by Service Canada. Recognizing that most interns will be in school at that time, approved interns will be required to work 20 hours a week. We believe this will help clubs actively recruit from schools and community groups during the winter should funding be approved. Any questions can be directed to Ryan Jones at

3. Provincial Rugby and High Performance

What impact does the indefinite suspension of sanctioned activities have on the Senior Women’s Program?

All activities associated with the Senior Women’s program have been temporarily suspended. The Eastern Canadian Rugby Championships (ECRC) originally scheduled for June 12th – 14th, 2020 has also been postponed. Rugby Ontario is working with the other Eastern provinces and Rugby Canada to determine if/when this competition could possibly be held. Once the feasibility of the ECRC has been determined, we will take the appropriate next steps to determine program plans.

What impact does the indefinite suspension of sanctioned activities have on the u19 Program?

The start of the u19 program has been postponed until a return to play date is set. All aspects of the program are currently under review. At this time, the intention is to still run a u19 program and based on the return to play date adjustments to the existing program structure and schedule will be made to reflect the new window of play.

What impact does the indefinite suspension of sanctioned activities have on the Provincial 7s Program?

All aspects of the remaining Provincial 7s season have been cancelled.

What impact does the indefinite suspension of sanctioned activities have on the Ontario Blues Academy?

The remaining Core Skill Session originally scheduled for March 28th has been cancelled. However, the final combine has been postponed and we will provide updates on potential new combine dates. The Ontario Blues program still intends to run this combine once clearance is given to resume rugby under the direction of Rugby Canada, all levels of government and public health authorities.

What impact does the indefinite suspension of sanctioned activities have on the Jr. Blues Program?

The start of the Jr. Blues program has been postponed until a return to play date is set. Once a return to play date is established details on a revised Jr. Blues model will be released. This revised model will take into account the new program window and look to maximize the available time.

4. Member Services: Registration

Which membership categories will be temporarily suspended?

Based on the Rugby Canada suspension of sanctioned rugby activities being extended indefinitely, registration will be temporarily suspended as of Monday April 6th, 2020 for the following membership categories:

  • All player categories
  • All coach, match official & therapist categories
  • Administration categories, such as Team Manager

Which membership categories are still available to register for?

The following categories will remain open and available:

  • Board member
  • Social member

Neither membership category carries national or provincial fees.

What is the importance of being registered as a Club/Branch Board Member?
If your club or branch utilizes the Director & Officers Insurance, please ensure that the elected or appointed leaders of your club are registered as Board Members for the 2020 season. In this unprecedented time, it is imperative all clubs take all necessary steps to ensure they meet all requirements to be exposed to the Directors & Officers Insurance. Please contact Elisa DiGiulio, Member Services Coordinator, at if you require further assistance.

What is the purpose of the Social Membership?

Social memberships are a non-playing registration category available to clubs to offer in their community. Your club can utilize this membership category to raise funds to support club operations and administration. We encourage all member clubs to consider this opportunity to ensure the financial health and sustainability during these challenging times.

Are there any opportunities to support Rugby Ontario?

Yes. We are working on a new opportunity for the rugby community to support the future of our organization and keep rugby alive and well in Ontario. Stay tuned for more details on this supporter program.

5. Refunds

The resulting impact caused by the COVID-19 pandemic on rugby programming has created a unique situation that our administration has not been faced with previously.  At this time of year, membership dues represent a material financial contribution to support our operations and delivery of programs, and those of our Member Clubs.

As we continue to navigate these challenging and uncertain times, Rugby Ontario would like to extend the opportunity for members that have registered in 2020 to forego a refund and consider making a contribution to Rugby Ontario and their respective Club to support the ongoing operations and administration of future rugby programs.

Can registered members request a refund from Rugby Ontario?

Please refer to the Rugby Ontario Refund Policy. Requests for refunds may be submitted for the following:

  • Any temporary memberships which were purchased for a forthcoming tour scheduled during the suspension of sanctioned rugby activities, or a tour impacted by the travel advisories issued by the Government of Canada in March 2020;
  • Anyone who purchased a 2020 Membership and has not yet participated in any rugby related activities; these are not limited to training and matches.

The timing of refunds may be significantly delayed due to inadvertent financial and administrative constraints at this time. We ask for your patience and support as we work through this situation.

How do I request a refund?

Refunds must be formally requested by the member, or on behalf of a member by a parent or guardian (applicable for any registrant under the age of majority in Ontario), through their SportLoMo account.

There are two processes for refunds:

Automatic Refunds: If a refund is requested within 15 days of the registration date, an automatic refund will be issued to the credit card used for purchase via SportLoMo.

Manual Refunds: If a refund is requested more than 15 days from the registration date, and is approved, Rugby Ontario will issue the refund for its portion of the registration dues offline by electronic funds transfer. Please note processing time may be significantly impacted as a result of COVID-19.

Full details on how to request an automatic refund and a manual refund can be found on our website here.

Important note: If a refund is approved, Rugby Canada, Rugby Ontario and the Member Club will each process their portion of the refund separately offline, outside of the SportLoMo platform; therefore, members who qualify for refunds will receive separate payments from these three entities.

If you have questions in regards to Rugby Ontario’s refund process, please contact our Member Services Coordinator, Elisa DiGiulio at

How will I receive my refund from Rugby Ontario once I request it through SportLomo?

In an effort to streamline our accounting process and enhance efficiency, Rugby Ontario (The Ontario Rugger Union) will be providing the refund through a secured direct deposit platform, Plooto. Plooto is our trusted online payment system and allows online transfers directly to your bank account. The Ontario Rugger Union uses Plooto, a secure business payment platform, to:

1) Avoid delays or disruptions

2) Reduce the risk of lost or stolen cheques in the mail and any fraud

3) Have one consistent electronic form of payments to all our contacts

When you receive an email from Plooto, please know it is safe to follow the outlined instructions to obtain your payment from The Ontario Rugger Union. Learn more at

What refunds are currently being issued by Rugby Canada?
Rugby Canada is currently issuing refunds for the following:

  • Any tours that have been sanctioned, and now cancelled;
  • Any temporary memberships which were purchased for a forthcoming tour;
  • Any Try Rugby events that were planned and are no longer going ahead.

How do I get my refund from Rugby Canada?

Rugby Canada has issued a statement providing an update on refund information. Full online refunds will be approved automatically if a request is submitted within 15 days of original purchase and no rugby activities have been attended within the 15-day timeframe. Outside the 2-week registration date, Rugby Canada will be issuing cheques to members who qualify for a refund. For further information, or to request a refund, please email

Please note that Rugby Canada is currently working through a number of refunds nationally and there may be a delay in processing time.

6. Training and Education

Are upcoming Coaching and Match Official courses cancelled?

Yes. Due to the indefinite suspension of all sanctioned rugby activities, and the closure of all schools in Ontario, all previously scheduled coaching and match official courses are currently cancelled.

Will courses be rescheduled later this year?

Rugby Ontario will be working on rescheduling courses throughout the province once it is safe to do so, following all of the guidelines provided by Rugby Canada, all levels of government and public health authorities.

Will any courses be provided online?

Rugby Canada and the Coaching Association of Canada (CAC) are currently working towards piloting certain sections and modules from courses online. Requirements, expectations and standards are still being determined and finalized. Full details will be provided once Rugby Ontario is updated and the option of online courses is confirmed.

What e-learning can I complete from home?

The Coaching Association of Canada (CAC) have a wide range of online e-modules, both free and at a cost, which can be completed. Full details can be found on the CAC website here and will be completed through The Locker. If you do not currently have a Locker profile, you can register for one here.

World Rugby has a wide range of e-learning modules, from Laws of the Game to Player Welfare, to name a few. All modules can be found and completed on the World Rugby Training Passport website here.

Rugby Canada is also currently offering webinars each week on a variety of topics; full schedule can be found on Rugby Canada’s website here. Additional webinars will be added to the schedule as confirmed.

7. Rugby Ontario Staff / Office

Is the Rugby Ontario office open?

No. Our office, which is located in the Abilities Centre in Whitby, has been closed and will remain closed for the foreseeable future.

Is the staff reachable?

Yes. Our staff are all working from home and can be reached via email during our regular office hours.

Click here to view our Staff Directory. Any general inquiries can be directed to:

8. Additional Resources


Rugby Canada Webinar Series  – Here

Coach Logic – Upcoming Webinars – Here

Coaching Resources:

Rugby Ontario Coaching Corner – Here

Rugby Ontario Coaching Resources – Here

World Rugby Training Passport – Here

Instagram Challenge: #AlwaysRugbyReady

Share how you are planning to #AlwaysRugbyReady with us on Instagram and we will feature your video in our story. Be sure to follow @RugbyOntario on Instagram and tag your friends in your post.

Websites and Videos:


At Home Player Workouts:

  • Lean Squad by Phil Mackenzie (former Canadian International and Professional Player) – Here
  • England Rugby & Virgin Active Training Videos – Here
  • Best Bodyweight Exercises for Rugby, The Rugby Store – Here
  • No Equipment Workout, Rugby Renegade – Here

Rugby Podcasts:

  • House of Rugby
  • The Rugby Pod
  • The Left Wing
  • Player Development Project
  • The Rugby Coaches Corner
  • The Talent Equation