TORONTO — The term “midget” is being dropped from youth divisions in Canadian hockey because the governing body aims to be more inclusive.

Hockey Canada says it wanted to be sure it wasn’t “putting up barriers to keep people away from the sport.”

The term “midget” has long been used in a variety of sports although it is considered derogatory by many. The term is no longer used in Minnesota youth hockey.

The issue generated attention a year ago in Canada when the parent of a young son with dwarfism noticed the term on a banner at a mall.

Also dropped starting next season are the categories novice, peewee, bantam and atom.

They will be replaced with age-based designators. The change was approved at Hockey Canada’s winter congress over the weekend.

"We believe everyone should feel welcome in the game and in our on-going effort to make hockey more inclusive, the members at the Hockey Canada annual meeting determined that the names of our age Divisions will change," Michael Brind'Amour, chair of the Hockey Canada board of directors, said in a statement.

"Following a comprehensive review, we believe this change will simplify the system for families who may be new to the game. The new age Division names will be implemented for next season."

Information from the Canadian Press was included in this report