On May 31st, 2017, the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport in Ontario Canada approved Order in Council 1087/2017 designating which amateur combat sports competitions are considered legal. Sports impacted by this order include karate, jiu-jitsu, judo and wrestling and other type of combat sports. This order legalizes these sports as long as the Provincial Sport Organization approves
This sounds like something that could make sense, until you read the order. Essentially, the problem is that BJJ competitions will be considered illegal due to having no governing body. All of the “legal” competitions have a Provincial Sport Organization (Boxing has “Boxing Ontario”) ensuring that their competitions are approved.
You can still practice BJJ, but after this order takes place, competing will be illegal until a Provincial Sport Organization for BJJ is created.
Here is the full order:
On the recommendation of the undersigned, the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, by and with the advice and concurrence of the Executive Council of Ontario, orders that:
WHEREAS clause 83(2)(a) of the Criminal Code excludes from the definition of a “prize fight” in section 83 of the Criminal Code a contest between amateur athletes in a combative sport with fists, hands or feet held in a province if the sport is on the programme of the International Olympic Committee or the International Paralympic Committee and, in the case where the province’s lieutenant governor in council or any other person or body specified by him or her requires it, the contest is held with their permission;
AND WHEREAS clause 83(2)(b) of the Criminal Code excludes from the definition of a “prize fight” in section 83 of the Criminal Code a contest between amateur athletes in a combative sport with fists, hands or feet held in a province if the sport has been designated by the province’s lieutenant governor in council or by any other person or body specified by him or her and, in the case where the lieutenant governor in council or other specified person or body requires it, the contest is held with their permission;
THEREFORE, for the purposes of clauses 83(2)(a) and 83(2)(b) of the Criminal Code,
- the following amateur sports are hereby designated:
- jiu jitsu
- muay thai
- permission is required from the Provincial Sport Organization recognized by the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport pursuant to its Sport Recognition Policy for the amateur sport, in order for a person to hold a contest in that amateur sport; and
- in the case of a wrestling contest to be held by a school or a university, permission is required from the applicable school or university athletic association or its affiliate.
AND FURTHER this Order in Council shall come into effect on July 1, 2017.
Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport
Approved and Ordered: May 30, 2017
Andy Gonzalez is a coach at Aces Jiu Jitsu Club. He has earned his purple belt under Professor Mikal Abdullah. Follow Andy on Twitter at @GoGoGonzilla
Andy lives in Austin, Texas with his wife Amanda and their 3 beautiful children. Andy is also the father of a Marine who is honorably serving in the United States Marine Corps.