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With temperatures soaring, children throughout New Jersey,
Pennsylvania and Delaware have been dreaming about getting
into the water.
Govs. Phil Murphy, Tom Wolf and John Carney
helped make those dreams a reality when they announced that
indoor and outdoor pools were able to
reopen, providing they follow the appropriate COVID-19 safety
protocols. Taking care to address concerns, the requirements
for reopening pools were put in place through close coordination
with local public health officials and industry best practices. The
governors should be commended for this decision as these facilities
provide a life-saving resource swim lessons that protect our
children from potential tragedy.
Simply put, swim lessons save childrens lives. Drowning is the
leading cause of accidental death for children under age 4, and the
second highest cause for children under age 14. New Jersey is no
exception, with 11 of its 89 drowning deaths in 2018 being
children under 14. A prolonged halt to learn-to-swim programs could
have caused these incidents to increase.
The governors had a hard decision to make, but, recognizing that
access to pools is essential to equipping our children with the
lifesaving and developmental skills they will need
this summer, they made the right one.
Tristan Formon, Gillette
Editors note: The writer is general chair of the statewide
New Jersey Swimming Inc.,
and the CEO of Berkeley Aquatic Club
in New Providence