May 8, 2020 — Jeanne Ives, candidate for Congress (IL-06) has begun gathering signatures for a petition calling upon Illinois Governor JB Pritzker to allow participation in youth sports over the summer of 2020.
The petition comes after Governor Pritzker rolled out a 5-Phase re-open plan that experts say could keep the suburbs shut down for another year.
Several studies have shown that children are not among the top transmitters of the virus. And it is important to recognize that there have been very few cases of coronavirus diagnosed in children. There is no data to support the idea that shutting kids out of outdoor activities prevents the spread of the COVID virus.
“The idea that one man is going to make these decisions for every child and family in the state is wrong,” said Ives. “As a mother of 5 and a former middle school cross country coach, I know how important sports and activities are to the mental and physical well-being of children and teens.”
“Now, families, schools and communities are faced with a great deal of uncertainty in the wake of the COVID shutdown. It is more important than ever that our kids are able to have fun, belong to a group, gain recognition and develop the team-building, problem-solving and physical skills that come with playing a sport. These are voluntary activities. No one has to participate. And it would not be hard to implement social distancing measures in many outdoor sports.
“Our kids have been cut off from the schools, friends and activities they love. They are suffering too because of this shut down. Let’s give them some normalcy and fun where we can. Outdoor sports are a great place to start.”