STATE OF NEW JERSEY
INTRODUCED FEBRUARY 27, 2014
Senator PETER J. BARNES, III
District 18 (Middlesex)
Proposes Children’s Outdoor Bill of Rights.
CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT
A Concurrent Resolution expressing support for a Children’s Outdoor Bill of Rights.
Whereas, Children are spending less time outdoors exploring, discovering and observing our natural world and playing and creating in open spaces; and
Whereas, Not participating in these types of activities has been shown to have adverse health, social and emotional consequences; and
Whereas, Spending time in the outdoors with frequent access to nature experiences and lessons provides a foundation upon which to build physical strength and environmental awareness; and
Whereas, Learning about the environment and other subjects in an outdoor setting, an outdoor classroom or garden, and through field studies and outdoor lab activities, is known to help increase student performance in class, increase student interest in learning, reduce disciplinary problems, and increase student ownership of work being done; and
Whereas, The future quality, quantity and use of New Jersey’s natural resources will lie in the hands of children; and
Whereas, Children will need to understand natural systems and the interrelationships between natural and human-built systems, in order to make decisions and take actions that will maintain a high quality of life; now, therefore,
Be It Resolved by the Senate of the State of New Jersey (the General Assembly concurring):
1. This Legislature proposes that every child has the right and should have opportunities to:
· Explore the woods; climb a tree
· Run through a field; build a fort
· Splash in the water; catch a fish
· Explore a city park; turn over a log
· Sleep out in a tent; gaze at stars
· Follow a trail; listen to bird song
· Play in the mud; hold a frog
· Plant a garden; eat locally grown food
· Play in the rain; follow animal tracks
· Be alone in nature; share it with a friend; and
· Celebrate New Jersey’s habitats; embrace New Jersey’s natural heritage.
2. Duly authenticated copies of this concurrent resolution, signed by the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the General Assembly and attested to by the Secretary of the Senate and the Clerk of the General Assembly, shall be transmitted to the Governor, the Commissioner of Environmental Protection, and the Commissioner of Children and Families.
This concurrent resolution expresses support for and strongly encourages a “Children’s Outdoor Bill of Rights,” which highlights for children the many benefits of participating in and enjoying outdoor activities, especially during the summer vacation.