To the editor,
The by the and distributed to the media regarding our legal complaint against those named was unfortunately more of the same from this group, and one more example of their “kill the messenger” response to critical problems that exist within the organization.This statement released by these NCLA representative confirms what we and our growing number of supporters have known all along, that certain members of the NCLA leadership will vindictively and aggressively seek to discredit anyone who challenges their authority. The retaliation and lack of transparency they continue to show once more spotlights why we have taken this action – to bring much-needed equity and fairness to the NCLA for the sake of young men and women who partake in its programs.As we’ve now said more than once, this type of response to issues raised by concerned parents - along with an aggressive and hostile defense of unhealthy policies and behavior by certain individuals with strong ties to the NCLA - has led to us filing suit. After working long and hard behind the scenes for years as volunteers, and recently attempting on numerous occasions to quietly have these concerns addressed over the last 16 months, this is clearly not about us, but rather about correcting an unsafe, unequal and unhealthy environment that these NCLA leaders have created.The NCLA's statement is filled with many misleading, pointed distortions of the truth and petty, personal attacks that are frankly too numerous to respond to here. However, it is of profound concern to us that a situation involving bullying of children, instigated by an adult assistant coach, continues to be ignored by certain NCLA leaders and irresponsibly characterized as a “personal conflict.” It is this type of response from those who should know better, which leads to potentially irreparable consequences and harm to young people. As prior, extensive efforts to try to engage the NCLA leaders in a reasonable resolution discussion have failed, we now plan to proceed with the legal processing of our complaint, which has always been focused on the goal of bringing gender equity and safer practices to the New Canaan youth lacrosse program. As has been the case for the past 16 months, we welcome any good faith efforts on the part of the NCLA leaders to appropriately resolve this matter.
Sincerely, Claudia and Roger Harris
(Editor's Note: Mr. Harris' first name has been corrected in the subheading of this story.)