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Legislation designed to enforce safety standards in football helmets

A bipartisan bill aimed at decreasing the concussion rate in youth and high school football players by improving helmet safety was introduced to Congress on Wednesday, in recognition of Brain Injury Awareness Day.

Senator Tom Udall (D—NM) and Congressman Bill Pascrell (D—NJ) sponsored the bill, which would give companies that make football helmets for youth and high school athletes nine months to improve helmet safety standards. If they fail to do so, the Consumer Product Safety Commission would be required to set standards. The bill would also enforce stricter penalties for companies that make false safety claims.

Rep. Pascrell, co-founder and co-chair of the Congressional Brain Injury Task Force, said, "We want our children to be active and athletic, but in the safest possible circumstances right down to the helmets they put on their heads. This bill is the logical next step in Congress' effort to protect our young athletes from brain injuries." In September, the U.S. House of Representatives passed Rep. Pascrell's Concussion Treatment and Care Tools Act, which calls for national protocols to be established for the management of sports-related concussions.

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