What Are Your Rights? New York Now Requires Football Programs to Provide Concussion Info

Message: Sponsored by Martin, Harding & Mazzotti.

Interviewer: Governor Andrew Cuomo recently signed legislation requiring tackle football programs for children to provide parents with information on concussions and sub-concussive blows. Here to help us understand what our rights are is managing partner Paul Harding from the law firm of Martin, Harding & Mazzotti. Paul, welcome.

Paul: Thank you.

Interviewer: Thanks for being here.

Paul: Absolutely.

Interviewer: So new legislation just signed recently, what’s it all about and when does it take effect?

Paul: So, in response to a report that came out several months ago that 5% of youth playing football will suffer a head injury, a closed head injury. Really, a concussion injury. So, what it is is this, is that any program, it can take 90 days before it comes into effect, but they’re gonna have to hand out informational packet before the season. “Hey, these are the risks. These are the things that could happen to your child, so you have to make an informed decision.”

Interviewer: Now, is this taking place or does this only apply to school football programs?

Paul: No, it’s far beyond that. The schools for sure, Pop Warner for sure, these club teams for sure. Probably anything beyond your thanksgiving family get-together football game that’s run by an adult should just do this to be safe. It’s all-encompassing.

Interviewer: Essentially any adult involved with a youth football program?

Paul: Yeah.

Interviewer: So, you mentioned this packet. What type of information should parents be on the lookout for in this packet that you mentioned?

Paul: The Department of Health has it on their website and you can go down and download that and take a look. But, see, a lot of us don’t know, a lot of people don’t know what to even look for in a head injury. So there it’s gonna say the way that it could happen, you know. Is there impact? Is your child acting a certain way? Sleeping a little too much? A bit irritable? To recognize it and then treatment. And then, of course, if there is found to have had a closed head injury, what do you do next? When do you allow him or her back on that football field?

Interviewer: All right, Paul. So parents at home, if you’re just joining us this afternoon, this packet of information you definitely want to be on the lookout for if your child plays youth football. Paul, thank you.

Paul: You’re welcome.

Message: Sponsored by Martin, Harding & Mazzotti.