New Chicago ordinance aimed at reducing sports brain injuries

When Chicago Alderman Ed Burke attended the November 1 BRF Discovery Dinner, he learned of the national movement to adopt new laws related to the care of young athletes with head injuries.  The dinner included a panel focused on sports-related brain injuries among youth.  Alderman Burke went to work right away with his colleague Alderman Latasha Thomas to move the City of Chicago forward in adopting an ordinance to do the same.

Passed by the city council in January, the ordinance requires any Chicago student-athlete who exhibits signs, symptoms, or behaviors associated with a concussion be removed from a game or practice and barred from returning without written medical clearance.  Schools not enforcing the ordinance risk losing their water and sewage exemption under the ordinance.

In discussing the ordinance, Alderman Burke said, “The most important part of this is public education…to persuade parents that putting their kids back in the game after a head injury is a recipe for disaster.  We understand the competitive nature of sports and how parents want their children to be competitive.  But, there has to be some caution.”

To learn more about the panel discussion, watch it live on our videos page.