Reverse the Ban on Water Bottles at Public Swimming Pools in DC
  • Petitioned The District of Columbia Department of Parks and Recreation
  • Responded

This petition was delivered to:

The District of Columbia Department of Parks and Recreation
Committee on Workforce and Community Affairs
Marion Barry
Director, DC Department of Parks and Recreation
Jesus Aguirre
See response
Committee on Workforce and Community Affairs
Kenyon McDuffie
Committee on Workforce and Community Affairs
Jim Graham
Committee on Workforce and Community Affairs
Tommy Wells
Committee on Workforce and Community Affairs
Yvette Alexander
DC Department of Health
Interim Director, DC Department of Health
Saul Levin

Reverse the Ban on Water Bottles at Public Swimming Pools in DC

    1. Petition by

      Peter Wong

      Washington, DC

  1.  
  2.   
May 2013

Victory

The petition is open. Peter Wong: As of ~7 pm on May 14, DPR states that non-glass, non-breakable water bottles will be allowed in the pool area. That said, DC Department of Health (DOH) is going to review the regulation, and DPR will have to comply with DOH's final findings/rulings.

The District of Columbia (DC) Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) recently instituted a ban on the use of water bottles at all DC public swimming pools. They cited the use of water bottles while swimming as a health violation. This new ban on water bottles at swimming pools in DC is particularly hazardous for swimmers - whether competitive or recreational. This restricts, and potentially eliminates, the ability for swimmers to stay adequately hydrated while swimming. This can be particularly dangerous during the summer season, when temperatures increase dramatically and outdoor pools open. While the DPR argues that water fountains are available at swimming pools, these are not an adequate substitute for water bottles: (a) water fountains are not conducive to consuming substantial amounts of water/liquid (which is often necessary during long workouts or high-heat situations); (b) during large team practices (e.g., club teams, high school teams), it is not feasible to allow the entire team to line up to hydrate when pool time and space is already so limited; and (c) water fountains are often out of order. Ultimately, this ban forces swimmers, both recreational and competitive, adult and child, to either give up swimming at DC public pools or to flirt with the dangers of dehydration, hyperthermia, etc.

Recent signatures

    News

    1. DPR Issues Statement Regarding Water Bottle Use

      Peter Wong
      Petition Organizer

      Current District of Columbia Department of Health (DOH) regulations cite that "…no food, drink, glass or animals [are allowed] in the pool area," (25-C DCMR § 6403). DOH is the agency responsible for licensing and inspecting all pools within the inventory of the DPR. The current regulations are designed to keep pools safe and free from any harmful substances that may contaminate pool water, as well as to eliminate clutter and other potential hazards from the pool deck. DOH and DPR are currently reviewing these regulations in light of the recent questions regarding the use of water bottles by pool patrons. Both DOH and DPR understand the importance of pool patrons maintaining maximum hydration and encourage patrons to continue to enjoy the District's pools. DPR and DOH will temporarily allow the use of non-glass, non-breakable, water bottles in the pool area at District aquatic facilities, pending a review of the regulations by both agencies.

    2. Decision-maker Jesus Aguirre responds:

      Jesus Aguirre

      STATEMENT

      FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: MAY 15, 2013

      DC Department of Health and DC Department of Parks and Recreation Release Statement on Water Bottle use in District Pools

      DOH to Review Regulations Surrounding District's ...


    3. DC "Temporarily" Lifts Ban on Water Bottles

      Peter Wong
      Petition Organizer

      As of ~7 pm on May 14, DPR states that non-glass, non-breakable water bottles will be allowed in the pool area. That said, DC Department of Health (DOH) is going to review the regulation, and DPR will have to comply with DOH's final findings/rulings.

    4. Reached 250 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • charles destro WEST LAFAYETTE, IN
      • 11 months ago

      As a former NCAA swimmer I understand the importance of having a water bottle with you at the pool.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Dawson Nash WASHINGTON, DC
      • 11 months ago

      Swimmers should be able to replenish fluids while swimming challenging workouts. The intent of the original regulation surely was not to ban water bottles.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Heather Cribbs OZARK, MO
      • 11 months ago

      bans like this have a tendancy to spread, and as a tri athlete I know how important it is to hydrate during my training.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Alex Caprara MONROEVILLE, PA
      • 11 months ago

      I am a swimmer, and I know the value of proper hydration during practice. Practicing without proper hydration can lead to the obvious effect of dehydration, but also decreases the effectiveness of training and hinders the performance of the athlete.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Brady Phillips WASHINGTON, DC
      • 11 months ago

      The ban on water at an exercise facility creates a public health risk.. it doesn't alleviate it. Ask any doctor or certified public health official. Please reconsider and elimate the ban on personal water bottles for lap and competitive swimmers at DC pools.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

    Develop your own tools to win.

    Use the Change.org API to develop your own organizing tools. Find out how to get started.