Res. No. 106
Resolution calling upon the Public School Athletic League (PSAL) to provide a medical professional and an ambulance for High School Football games as well as practices in New York City.
By Council Members Rose and Brannan
Whereas, On Labor Day, September 1, 2014, a high school football player from Staten Island, Miles Kirland-Thomas, who played on the Curtis High School varsity squad, died after collapsing at a morning football practice; and
Whereas, As reported on SILive.com, Mr. Kirkland-Thomas reportedly collapsed after doing wind sprints on the practice field during the hot and humid morning practice; and
Whereas, SILive.com further reported that, at the time of Mr. Kirkland-Thomas’s death and as is currently the case, the PSAL requires the cessation of all exercise if the temperature reaches 85 degrees and the humidity reaches 80 percent; and
Whereas, On the morning of Mr. Kirland-Thomas’s death, both the humidity and temperature were lower than that which would have necessitated ending the practice session, illustrating that under any circumstances, severe and fatal events can occur, especially during football games; and
Whereas, To underscore the extent a tragedy like this has on a family one need only read the words of Miles’ mother, who said “This is the worst feeling that you can have in your life…I don’t wish this on anybody.”; and
Whereas, As reported in the Daily News, two years ago another Staten Island High School football player, Nicholas Dellaventura, 15 years of age, also collapsed and died following a workout; and
Whereas, According to a report by the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research, deaths in football are “rare but tragic events,” with 17 direct and indirect deaths during the 2013 football season out of approximately 1.1 million high school players; and
Whereas, As reported on CNN on October 7, 2014, “while there is debate over whether football has become too dangerous for our children knowing what we know now, it’s clear there’s agreement on a key way to help keep our kids safe; making sure safety is the top focus”; and
Whereas, It cannot be argued that the best way to avoid serious consequences from an injury is the immediacy of medical care; and
Whereas, Even one preventable death is one too many, and clearly an available ambulance at a football game or practice would dramatically reduce the time for a seriously injured or ill player to reach a hospital’s emergency department; and;
Whereas, There can be no greater respect shown to the family of Miles Kirkland-Thomas, while also likely preventing the deaths of other children, than the policy change proposed herein; now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Council of the City of New York calls upon the Public School Athletic League (PSAL) to provide a medical professional and an ambulance for High School Football games as well as practices in New York City.
LS# 2831/ 505-2014