The Seventh Annual "See The Line" Symposium
See The Line, the annual symposium on concussions hosted by Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, was on campus for the seventh consecutive year.
The symposium saw physicians, athletes, and researchers convene at Western University to discuss the latest developments in concussion prevention, public education, and the role of media in building awareness.
See The Line’s honorary Chair and NHL Hall of Famer, Eric Lindros, has been an active proponent of eliminating body checks in the NHL. After sustaining multiple head injuries, a deathly shoulder check by Scott Stevens on May 26th 2000 during the Eastern Conference Finals would be the last nail in the coffin for Lindros’ NHL career.
Today, Big E has been elemental in the passing of Rowan’s Law in March 2018, an Ontario legislation that mandates concussion awareness training for all youth athletes and coaches.
Also present at the symposium was Rick Westhead, senior correspondent for TSN.
"Different media are good at playing different roles," he said. "I would not be good as a play-by-play reporter who is calling an NHL game and, I don’t expect the people who are doing play-by-play to spend six months on a story in the same way that I would," he explained. "I think my job is to speak truth to power and hold these leagues responsible. Not everybody is going to do that."
Westhead has actively covered the controversies and lawsuits surrounding brain injuries in the NHL including some groundbreaking investigation of poverty, homelessness, and mental health issues among former NHL stars.
Though the NHL still vehemently denies to talk about these allegations, the years of advocacy and investigations have left an undeniable reminder of those left behind by brain injuries. Rowan’s Law was passed following the death of Ottawa high school athlete Rowan Stringer. The repeated head injuries she sustained during rugby practice eventually took her life on May 12th 2013. Her death was a wake-up call for Ontario’s youth sport protocols. Now, the last Wednesday of September is mourned as Rowan’s Law Day. This year, Rowan’s Law Day falls on September 29th.