Ga. House passes law in honor of young drowning victim
AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Izzy’s Law has passed the Georgia House of Representatives and is on its way to the governor’s desk for his signature.
The bill, sponsored by Sen. Max Burns, R-Sylvania, was proposed in honor of Izzy Scott, a 4-year-old who drowned on his second day of swimming lessons at a private pool in Burke County.
The bill, which passed Monday in the House after previously being approved nearly unanimously in the Senate, calls for more restrictions and guidance for private swim lessons.
Izzy’s instructor, Lexie Tenhuisen was arrested and charged in January with involuntary manslaughter. But before those charges, the case went from the hands of the Burke County Sheriff’s Office to the district attorney, to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, and then back to the district attorney.
Georgia does not have many regulations on private swim lessons or instructors. Getting this bill signed into law is a top priority for several lawmakers.
READ THE LEGISLATION:
Izzy’s Law would require the Department of Public Health to develop a widely accessible and downloadable safety plan for aquatic activities based on the standards for nationally accredited swim instructors.
Specifically, Izzy’s Law would require that each swim instructor has a safety plan including but not limited to:
- A necessary student-to-instructor ratio.
- Presence of a secondary supervisor to assist in the safety of all swimmers
- Allowing all parents and guardians to be present at private swim lessons
“I am proud of my Senate colleagues for passing Izzy’s Law,” Burns said. “This bill is incredibly important to me, as I have worked closely with Izzy’s family through every step of the legislative process.”
“This bill is a reflection of the hard work and advocacy of the Scott family, who have been there through every step of the legislative process. Izzy’s Law ensures our children are protected through the development of safety aquatic plans for private swim instructors. I am honored to see the passage of this legislation that will create a safer Georgia and thoughtfully honor the life of Israel Scott,” he said in a statement.
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