The American Heart Association is supporting House Bill 525 and Senate Bill 392, which limit liability for schools that voluntarily open their playgrounds and facilities to community groups and individuals during nonschool hours. HB 525 passed the Florida House.
However, the plaintiffs’ attorneys are protecting their own interests, not those of Florida’s children or schools and are blocking action on the Senate bill.
Americans’ decreasing physical health costs more than $147 billion a year in additional treatment, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Politicians talk about maximizing tax dollars, and expanding playground use does just that.
The principals responsible for educating our children are also capable of ensuring that school grounds are well maintained. Under these bills, the school districts interests will be protected, and so will our children.
Crystal Collins Spencer, chairwoman, and David Markiewicz, executive vice president, American Heart Association, Greater Southeast Affiliate,