Bill Allowing Public Access to School Playgrounds Moving Through Florida Legislature

A bill that would allow school districts to enter into agreements with local governments and organizations to use public school playgrounds is making its way through the Florida House of Representatives. A similar bill has been introduced in the senate.

The stated concept behind the legislation is to help in the fight against the epidemic of childhood obesity. By making playgrounds accessible on weekends and after school hours, lawmakers are hoping to widen the array of venues children have access to for physical activity.

However, some school district officials are concerned about safety issues. Bay District Schools Chief Operating Officer, Dr. John Haley said that to ensure safety, “there has to be a set of rules … similar to pool rules.”

According to WMMB News, while some parents like the idea of the public gaining access to school playgrounds, others aren’t quite so sure. While one man agreed with the proposed bill, he stated, “I just want to make sure it doesn’t endanger the kids, security would be an issue.”

Playground Safety

It is estimated that more than 200,000 children are severely injured in playground accidents every year. From 2001 to 2008 the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) investigated 40 deaths associated with playground equipment. A 2002 survey found that 75 percent of all public playgrounds lacked adequate protective surfacing.

Experts acknowledge that adult supervision and regular maintenance are key to keeping kids safe on playgrounds.

Help Prevent Child Injury Accidents

Getting Florida kids outside and active should be a top priority. However, when it comes to playgrounds, the FIRST priority is to keep children safe. If your child has been injured because of unsafe playground conditions or another person’s negligence, the personal injury attorneys in Tallahassee at Farah & Farah will work tirelessly on your behalf to see that justice is done.

Sources: http://www.wmbb.com/story/16699453/school-playgrounds-for-public-use; http://www.abc-7.com/story/16903384/keep-your-kid-safe-on-the-playground

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