New Law Concerning Youth Sports Coaches

An important announcement from Houston Manning, Athletic Programs Administrator for the City of Auburn’s Parks and Recreation Department:

The State of Alabama has passed a new law concerning coaching youth sports.

During its 2018 Regular Session, the Alabama Legislature passed Act #2018-496, “The Coach Safely Act”, which is applicable to paid or volunteer coaches participating in youth athletic activities sponsored by municipalities and sports associations. We are implementing this safety training within the City of Auburn youth athletic programming in an effort to provide the safest environment possible.

Definition of Paid or Volunteer Coach:  This is anyone who is a head coach, assistant coach or anyone that helps coach/instruct during practices and/or games.

Proposed in conjunction with the Coach Safely Foundation, the law is the first of its kind to address public concerns about sports injuries for youth athletes participating in community or association athletics. The implementation and enforcement of the Coach Safely Act is administered by the Alabama Department of Public Health and requires all athletic coaches, who coach youth 14 years and under, to take an annual injury prevention course.

Every state municipality and sports association in Alabama will be affected by the Coach Safely Act as a matter of risk management. A 501-c-3 foundation has been formed specifically to support all 400 plus state municipalities. The Foundation has been named the Coach Safely Foundation and is supported by Children’s of Alabama, Encore Rehabilitation, ThreatAdvice as well as public and private grants.

The law requires that the course cover prevention and injury recognition of:

  • Concussions
  • Heat and Exertion Illnesses
  • Trauma and Overuse
  • Sudden Cardiac Arrest
  • Emergency Action Plan

The City of Auburn will implement these requirements through online training provided by the CoachSafely website. The CoachSafely website is affiliated with Children’s of Alabama.

Stay tuned for additional details.

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