How to Reach Out to Your Representatives to Pass Water Safety LawShawn Slevin
Greetings Swim Strong Friends in NEW YORK City and State,
Please be aware that there are two Bills S2207 and A728 making their way through the legislative process in the Senate and Assembly. They seek to mandate the training of water safety education in NY State and City schools.
We need you to reach out to your own Senator and Assembly Member and ask them to co-sponsor these bills and vote YES to pass them into law,
The Senate Bill is Sponsored by Senator Joseph Addabbo and Co-Sponsored by Senators George Borrello and James Sanders. The Assembly Bill is Sponsored by AM Stacey Pheffer-Amato and Co-sponsored by AMs Brian Barnwell, Catalina Cruz and JoAnne Simon. Swim Strong Foundation is grateful for their leadership on this issue which will save lives..
Summary: Requires water safety instruction in schools; provides that such age appropriate instruction shall include, but not be limited to, the proper use of flotation devices, awareness of water conditions, how to respond if caught in a rip current, the proper supervision of swim areas, safe behaviors in and around the water, the importance of pool barriers and fencing, the importance of formal swim lessons, the importance of avoiding alcohol and substance use with water recreation, the importance of cardiopulmonary resuscitation for drowning victims and the importance of the order of administering such aid.
THE NEED FOR WATER SAFETY
As concerned citizens , we know first hand that not all students have access to aquatic education across school districts in our state. While many of our children do not regularly swim in a pool, lake, ocean or live near water drowning is a leading cause of death for children under 14, with children of color three times more likely than their Caucasian peers to drown. For every child who dies from drowning another five receive emergency department care for nonfatal submersion injuries. (According to the CDC) 95% of drownings are actually preventable!!
The lack of consistent aquatic education has already cost too many students their lives. The students need to learn at an early age how powerful water is and how to behave at, in, on, and around water.
Our world is becoming more watery. We need this education NOW!
Please share this with your family members and friends and ask them also to call their Senator and Assembly Member and urge them to co-sponsor and VOTE YES in support of these Bills.
Here are the links to help you find your Senator and Assembly Member
Here is a sample advocacy letter
The Honorable NAME of your Senator in one letter, Assembly Member in separate Letter
Dear Honorable NAME :
I am in support of Senate Bill S 2207 and Assembly Bill A 728 – The Water Safety Education Bill.
As a concerned parent , I know first hand that not all students have access to aquatic education across all school districts in our state. The lack of consistent aquatic education has already cost our students their lives. The students need to learn at an early age how powerful water is and how to behave at, in, on, and around water. According to the CDC, approximately “one in five people who die from drowning are children 14 and younger. For every child who dies from drowning another five receive emergency department care for nonfatal submersion injuries.”
Our world is becoming more watery. We need this education NOW! Please co-sponsor this Bill and be sure to VOTE YES in support of it. Thank you!
ABOUT SWIM STRONG FOUNDATION
Since 2006, Swim Strong has taught more than 10,000 people how to swim. Nearly half of these were low-income students who received free lessons ($1 million+ in value). We offer Learn to Swim programs for youth, adults, those with special needs, veterans and recruits who want to join the Armed Forces. Swim Strong operates in pools at schools and community locations in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens. We present “A Film Called Blacks Can’t Swim,” in collaboration with hip-hop artist Ed Accura, to raise awareness and change perceptions about swimming in communities of color. You can view the trailer here.
Swim Strong Foundation also offers a virtual educational water safety program “Know Before You Go® ,” which addresses the environmental nature and potential dangers of water wherever we find it, from inside our homes to everywhere we meet it out-of-doors year-round. (This is not in-pool swim lessons.) It will help children and adults make the right decisions to stay safe in and around water, whether they swim or not. To date, 9,000 have participated in this training in the U.S. and internationally. This article explains more about the importance of the program
Thank you for helping us bring education to our children that is lifesaving..
NOT One More Drowning!