WASHINGTON – Lacrosse is Maryland’s signature sport so any legislation to change it was bound to generate controversy but this time the debate was cut short by the very lawmakers who proposed it.
The bill that would have required girls to wear protective headgear for lacrosse has been withdrawn.
Maryland Delegates Dana Stein and Jon Cardin proposed the bill citing concerns from parents over the fact that when boys play lacrosse, they wear protective headgear but girls do not. However, the lacrosse community voiced strong opposition.
The change came days after Steve Stenersen, the president and CEO of U.S. Lacrosse, called the legislation short-sighted and confusing. One argument suggested that equipping girls with headgear would promote more aggressive play.
There will continue to be concern in the lacrosse community over the best way to prevent injuries. USLacrosse.org reported in 2011 that there were seven concussions on the girls lacrosse team at Bullis, a private school in Potomac, Md. The head injuries led the coach to require girls to wear rugby helmets for play in 2012.