Rowan's Law (Concussion Safety), 2017
Bill or Act:
Summary of Proposal:
On December 14, 2017 the government introduced Bill 193, Rowan's Law (Concussion Safety), 2017, that would, if passed, provide the framework to govern concussion prevention, detection, management and awareness in amateur competitive sport and schools.
If passed, this new legislation, would require "sport organizations", which may include post-secondary institutions (subject to the specifics outlined in regulations), to implement the following:
Annual review of concussion awareness resources by athletes, parents/guardians of athletes under 18 years of age, coaches, and any other positions, such as officials, as prescribed by regulation;
Establish a removal-from-sport protocol for athletes suspected of having sustained a concussion;
Establish a return-to-sport protocol for athletes who have sustained a concussion, or who are suspected of having sustained a concussion; and
Establish a concussion code of conduct.
The proposed legislation would also proclaim a "Rowan's Law Day" to be held every year on the last Wednesday of September to promote concussion awareness, management and prevention. If the Bill is passed in its current form, further requirements and implementation details would be set out in regulation. Proposed regulations would be developed through consultation with sport, education, community sectors and partners. Some examples of regulations that might be considered include:
Prescribing activity in connection with amateur sport for the purpose of the definition of "sport organizations", prescribing age requirements or restrictions for any/all elements of the provisions of the proposed Bill;
Prescribing requirements about the review of concussion awareness resources and concussion codes of conduct; and
Prescribing requirements for removal-from-sport and return-to sport protocols.
The Bill includes amendments to the Education Act that would give the Minister of Education authority to issue binding policies and guidelines for school boards respecting concussions in students that would be consistent with Rowan's Law (Concussion Safety), 2017. The amendment would also give the Minister authority to make concussion regulations for private schools, consistent with Rowan's Law (Concussion Safety), 2017. If passed, the ministry would engage with school boards and other partners on policy changes and potential regulations.
We are interested in your responses to the following questions:
1. There is a significant body of research confirming the harmful long-term effects of undetected concussions, as well as those that are not managed properly. If passed, Bill 193 is intended to increase concussion safety of athletes, including students, in amateur competitive sport and in schools. Do you have any comments about potential impacts of the draft framework legislation on concussion safety for athletes in sport and schools?
2. Should the proposed legislation pass in the Legislature, how would you ensure that all implicated individuals in your organization meet the mandatory elements of the Bill?
3. What types of government tools/supports would be most helpful for organizations, to ensure compliance with the legislative framework?
December 15, 2017
Comments Due Date:
January 29, 2018
Proposed Rowan's Law
c/o Sport, Recreation & Community Programs Division
Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport
777 Bay Street, 18th Floor,
Toronto Ontario, M7A 1S5