NJ Bill Would Make Sensitivity Training Mandatory

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A New Jersey lawmaker and high school football coach is recommending mandatory sensitivity training for all prep coaches and athletic directors.

“It’s unfortunate that we have to have legislation on this when these behaviors should be addressed at home and should be taught at home,” Wimberly said Thursday, according to NJ.com.

Wimberly’s bill was introduced before the recent incident at Buena Regional High School where referees forced a high school wrestler to cut his dreadlocks prior to a match, but Wimberly says the story represents a prime example what his bill aims to address.

“You would have been clearly sensitive to the fact of a young man having dreadlocks and how insensitive it is to cut somebody’s dreadlocks,” Wimberly said. “Unfortunately, his situation will probably bring life to this across the board to everybody."

Wimberly’s proposal was passed by an Assembly committee Thursday. The bill calls for the state Department of Education to develop the training. The New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association would then be required to ensure that all new coaches and athletic directors complete the course before getting hired and all current coaches participate in training every four years.

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