Sarlo Measure Would Require Protective Eyewear For Young Athletes

TRENTON – A measure sponsored by Senator Paul A. Sarlo that would require children who wear prescription eyeglasses while participating in sports activities to wear protective eyewear was approved today by the Senate Education Committee.

“This is an issue of protection for the State’s young athletes,” said Senator Sarlo, D-Bergen and Passaic. “40% of all eye injuries occur during sports/recreation activities. By requiring them to wear protective eyewear, we could be protecting them from serious sight-threatening injury.”

Senator Sarlo’s measure, S-1970, would require children who wear corrective glasses while participating in sports to wear protective eyewear that meets the frame standards of the American Society for Testing and Materials (ATSM) and the lens standards of the American National Standards Institute. The bill’s provisions would apply to children participating in school, community or government sponsored sports, including soccer, volleyball, basketball and field hockey.

The measure would authorize the New Jersey Council on Physical Fitness and Sports to provide assistance grants to low-income families to help them purchase the protective eyewear.

“Statistics have shown that 90% of all eye injuries are preventable with protective eyewear. This measure would work to ensure that sports are enjoyable for the State’s children,” said Senator Sarlo.

This measure now awaits approval by the full Senate.

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