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McKeon Bill Establishing a Task Force to Examine Issues in Youth Sports Advances

TRENTON – The Senate Education Committee advanced legislation today sponsored by Senator John McKeon that would establish a task force to study and consider issues regarding youth sports.

“Youth sports promote positive life skills like self-discipline, healthy competition, and physical fitness. Despite this, participation in youth sports by players and officials has declined due to unsportsmanlike conduct and harassment from spectators and rising costs to play,” said Senator McKeon (D-Essex/Passaic). “By examining the current culture and climate of youth sports, we can address these issues and increase participation in this important area of youth development.”

The Youth Sports Task Force would be comprised of 13 members including experts on bullying, youth athletes, parents, and coaches.

Issues the task force would study include protections for participants from deceitful business practices conducted by for-profit entities sponsoring youth sports, training for coaches to recognize harassment, and protection for sports officials from abusive behavior.

The task force would hold at least one public hearing during its work to receive input on the issues being studied.

The bill, S-1114, advanced out of committee in a 5-0 vote.