New Democrats introduce sports injury reduction strategy
OTTAWA― One year after NDP sports critic Glenn Thibeault (Sudbury) and fellow MP Thomas Mulcair (Outremont) called for a royal commission on serious sports injuries, the New Democrats have come up with a concrete first step in addressing the ongoing concussion epidemic occurring at the amateur sports level in Canada.
Today, Thibeault, the New Democratic Sports Critic, introduced The National Strategy for Serious Injury Reduction in Amateur Sport Act.
Thibeault’s legislation mandates that the federal government convene a conference of First Ministers of Health, as well as members of the athletic and medical communities, in order implement a strategy for tackling this growing public health concern. Specifically the bill outlines a strategy for the federal government to:
- Create a national sports injury surveillance and data collection system;
- Establish substantive concussion guidelines, including a sufficient deterrent mechanism to ensure athletes are not being returned to play against expressed medical recommendations;
- Create national training and educational standards for coaches and other persons involved in amateur sport
- Institute incentivized funding guidelines to assist amateur sports organizations in implementing these protocols
Supporters of the proposal who were present at the morning’s press conference included: Dr. Neilank Kumar Jha, MD Neurosurgeon and chair of WATCH Community International and Susan Forbes, Adjunct Professor of Kinesiology and Injury Research Project Manager at Lakehead University.