‘HIT. STOP. SIT.’ VIDEO KICKS OFF ROWAN’S LAW AWARENESS CAMPAIGN
BROCKVILLE — Ontario’s government for the people is making it safer for competitive amateur athletes, children and youth to play sport in Leeds-Grenville-Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes, says MPP Steve Clark.
Today in Toronto, Michael Tibollo, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport was joined by Hockey Hall of Famer and concussion advocate Eric Lindros to officially launch the Rowan’s Law awareness campaign. The goal of the campaign is to help young athletes, their parents and coaches across the province recognize the signs of a concussion.
“From my own experience playing sports, I know there were times when I or my teammates should have headed to the sidelines instead of staying in the game,” said Clark. “I’m so pleased to see the progress we’re making to ensure sports are safer for children and amateur athletes by increasing the awareness about the dangers of head injuries. Coaches, parents and players need to look out for one another and know it’s not a sign of weakness to leave the game to make sure you’re OK.”
“With the spirit and story of Rowan Stringer’s preventable passing, Ontario’s government for the people is making sport safer by raising awareness about concussion safety,” said Minister Tibollo. “Reducing the risk of concussions is always the goal, but concussions happen. Knowing what to do if a concussion happens – whether you’re an athlete, a student, a parent, a coach, an official or an educator – saves lives.”
The campaign was launched with the “Hit. Stop. Sit.” concussion safety video that has been playing in cinemas and will be running over the next few weeks. Through video, print and social media, the Rowan’s Law awareness campaign will change the conversation about how concussions are handled in amateur sport.
The campaign encourages coaches, parents and players to stop celebrating the “warriors” who jump back in the game after a concussion – and instead recognize the serious brain injuries that concussions represent.
Lisa MacLeod, Minister of Children, Community and Social Services, sponsored Rowan’s Law (Concussion Safety) in the Legislative Assembly, where it passed with unanimous support in March 2018. Ontario is a world leader in concussion safety and is the first jurisdiction in Canada to pass concussion safety legislation.
- Rowan’s Law was named after Rowan Stringer, a 17-year-old Ottawa rugby player who died in spring 2013 from a condition known as second impact syndrome, which is the catastrophic swelling of the brain.
- Starting July 1, 2019, athletes, parents, coaches and officials will be required to review the concussion awareness resources and the sport organization’s concussion code of conduct.
- The highest rates of concussion in Ontario are found among children and youth under the age of 18.
- Concussions represent more than one in five Ontario student injuries treated by a doctor or nurse.
- Ontario students who report a head injury are more than twice as likely to report very high emotional distress and less success in academics.