APNewsBreak: Illinois youth tackle football ban dead for now

April 18, 2018 - 1:46 pm

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — The sponsor of a proposal to ban Illinois children younger than 12 from playing tackle football tells The Associated Press the measure lacks the votes to pass this session.

Democratic Rep. Carol Sente (SEN'-tay) of Vernon Hills says a House floor would fall short. She will focus on educating people about the dangers of "repeated ... hits to the youth brain."

Research suggests a link between recurring blows and chronic traumatic encephalopathy. CTE is a dementia-like, degenerative disease characterized by memory loss, violent urges, depression and more. Prominent ex-football players who died by suicide had brains showing signs of CTE.

Sente's legislation is meant to delay the trauma until after children's brains are better developed.

Opponents say there are safe tackling techniques and a ban is an overreach.

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