Home Sport Gavin Newsom blockiert das vorgeschlagene Verbot des Jugend-Tackle-Footballs

Gavin Newsom blockiert das vorgeschlagene Verbot des Jugend-Tackle-Footballs

von NFI Redaktion

The governor of California, Gavin Newsom, vetoed a proposal on Tuesday evening that aimed to ban youth football.

The bill introduced by the California Assembly would have eliminated tackle football for children under 12 years old. According to Politico, the national GOP intended to make the bill a talking point in the 2024 election year. The veto comes just days before Fox News is reportedly set to air a segment on a long-time youth football coach and a top opponent of the bill.

„I am deeply concerned about the health and safety of our young athletes, but an outright ban is not the solution,“ Newsom said in a statement, as reported by Politico. „My administration will work with the legislature and the bill’s author to strengthen safety in youth football – while ensuring that parents have the freedom to decide which sports are best for their children.“

It is unclear whether there will be a path for the bill this year or ever.

California is not the only state to have considered banning youth tackle football. The Democrats in the state of New York introduced a similar bill in 2023, which aims to prohibit tackle football for children under 12 years old. The bill, introduced by New York Assemblyman and long-time advocate for youth sports safety, Michael Benedetto, never made it to a full vote on the floor. Benedetto has been introducing similar youth tackle football ban bills for a decade without success.

„While the science appears to be increasingly on my side, it’s still a controversial issue,“ Benedetto said in an interview with Politico. „I am generally viewed in certain parts of New York as someone who needs to be vilified because I am vilifying America’s children.“

A 2021 study by the CDC found that athletes aged 6 to 14 experienced 15 times more head impacts in tackle football compared to flag football. There were 23 times more severe head impacts in tackle football.

In 2019, Canada banned tackle football for children under 12 for safety reasons, resulting in a 40% reduction in football participation compared to the previous decade, as reported by Yahoo Sports.

Similar declines in participation in tackle football are documented in the United States. Between 2016 and 2021, regular participation in tackle football by children aged 6 to 12 decreased by 26%, according to survey data from the Sports and Fitness Industry Association. The NFL has made concerted efforts to invest in youth flag football. NFL FLAG has reportedly led to over 1,600 teams and 620,000 athletes aged 4 to 17 playing flag football in all 50 states.

According to the Washington Post, more children aged 6 to 12 now play flag football than tackle football. At the high school level, football remains the most popular high school sport by a large margin. The National Federation of State High School Associations found that participation in tackle football at American high schools increased by about 5% from 2021 to 2022, after declining during the pandemic.

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