Rep. Lois Capps (CA-24), Rep. Bill Pascrell (NJ-09) and Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) introduced the Supporting Athletes, Families and Educators to Protect the Lives of Athletic Youth (SAFE PLAY) Act, a bill that would promote the safety of our young athletes. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), participation in organized sports has risen to nearly 30 million children across the country. While sports are an important part of a healthy childhood, we’ve seen a troubling increase in student athletes suffering from sports related injuries including concussions, heat stroke, and even sudden cardiac arrest.
Specifically, more than 3.5 million kids under age 14 receive medical treatment for sports injuries each year and children ages 5 to 14 account for nearly 40 percent of all sports-related injuries treated in hospitals. address this concerning trend, the SAFE PLAY Act would take a multipronged approach of research, community education, and federal support for school district to adopt best practices to keep kids safe, focusing on several areas, including heat exposure, CPR and AED training, concussion response, and energy drink consumption, to ensure children’s safety in athletics and on campus.