(Life Jacket Law)
My local Board of Health has provided me with the follow notice and FAQ sheet on Christian’s law ( Life Jacket law) which is now in effect. Make sure you are prepared for this summer.
Angela Snell, CPRP
MRPA Legislative Rep.
Dear Local Health Official:
A Frequently Asked Questions document regarding Massachusetts General Law c. 111, §127A½, commonly referred to as Christian’s Law, has been placed on the Department of Public Health, Bureau of Environmental Health, Community Sanitation Program website. As you know, Christian’s Law was enacted on July 12, 2012 and went into effect on October 16, 2012 and requires that all municipal and recreational programs or licensed camps conducting swimming at fresh or saltwater beaches must: ensure that all minors are swim tested at the first swimming session; provide a properly sized and snug-fitting personal floatation device (PFD) to non or at-risk swimmers; and must allow parents to provide a properly fitting PFD to the child, if they so choose.
Regulations clarifying swim test requirements and other aspects of the law are being developed; however, the mandate requiring municipal and recreational programs or licensed camps to use PFDs if provided by a parent has been in effect since October 16, 2012 and will apply to the upcoming season.
Please review the document and share it with your municipal Recreational Department and any licensed camps that may conduct swimming at fresh or saltwater beaches in your municipality. The document can be found at http://www.mass.gov/eohhs/docs/dph/environmental/sanitation/christians-law-faq.pdf
Director, Community Sanitation Program
Bureau of Environmental Health
News from U.S. Education Department!
Students with disabilities in sports programs
Breaking new ground, the U.S. Education Department is telling schools they must include students with disabilities in sports programs or provide equal alternative options…”This is a landmark moment for students with disabilities. This will do for students with disabilities what Title IX did for women,” said Terri Lakowski, who led a coalition pushing for the changes for a decade. “This is a huge victory.”
MRPA Play Local Initiative
Community Branch Representative
Melissa Battite, CPRP
The MRPA Executive Board continues to build on our Play Local Initiative. This initiative is an awareness campaign that encourages community members to learn and explore more of our local resources provided through our local Park and Recreation agencies. In the spring of 2012, the Executive Board voted the expenditure of $2,000.00 towards a media project with Comcast Travel Channel to include featured segments on the “Best of New England” show on the Travel Channel of Comcast. The goal is to showcase our agencies, regions, services and MRPA.
ADA Compliance Date Approaching
Indianapolis, IN (November 27, 2012) — The date for compliance with the 2010 revised Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards for accessible design (including pools) is January 31, 2013.
New rules relevant to the camp community include: new accessible design standards for a variety of recreational facilities, program accessibility, removal of barriers, and wheelchair and other power-driven mobility device permission in pedestrian areas.
It is important for your camp to understand your requirements — and the exemptions from compliance. ACA’s resource page can help you learn more about the new regulations. The page also provides tools to help you assess your camp’s situation.