WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, spoke on the diversity of issues plaguing youth and adult athletes, such as improper injury care and sexual abuse, in today’s hearing focused on athlete safety and integrity in sports. Ranking Member Cantwell stressed the serious dangers of concussions and praised a Washington state bill, the Zackery Lystedt Law, which ensures young athletes do not return to play without the approval of a licensed healthcare provider.
“One of the most important sports-related issues facing the committee is to protect our athletes from the dangers of concussions,” Senator Cantwell said. “I was proud that the state of Washington led the way on this issue in 2009, passing the Zackery Lystedt law to reduce concussions in youth sports, one of the first in the nation laws in this area.”
Senator Cantwell also lauded the Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act of 2017, which has developed concrete resources to protect athletes from emotional and physical abuse and harassment. This bill created the U.S. Center for SafeSport, a non-profit organization dedicated to preventing and responding to any and all misconduct.
“Thank you [Mr. Chairman] for mentioning the issue of sexual assault that continues to plague sports and the horrifying events that this committee has tried to deal with. I know that it’s going to be a continued effort by everyone not to have this unacceptable silence when these events happen. So I was proud to support the Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act of 2017.”