New Florida law introduced will change how kids buckle up

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A new law is being introduced in Florida that could change the way parents buckle up their kids.

The legislation regarding child car seats is being considered by state lawmakers, and it has received differing reactions from parents.

Action News Jax Logan MacDonald spoke with parents on the southside about the new law and heard mixed opinions.

According to the Center for Disease Control, booster seats reduce the risk of serious injury by 45% for children ages four through eight, compared to just using a seatbelt.

However, in Florida, children are currently required to use a booster seat until only the age of five. The proposed Senate Bill 1374 would raise that age requirement to seven years old, while a similar bill is moving through the House.

One parent, Amanda O’Neil, thinks the bill is a step towards increasing children’s safety.

“You never know what can happen, accidents can happen, and it’s a scary world, to be honest with you,” said O’Neil. “I think that children need to be safe in cars as long as possible.”

O’Neil also stated that she typically errs on the side of caution with her little one, as she has him rear-facing and plans to keep him that way for at least another year.

However, another parent, Natalie Skinner, who requested to not have her face shown on camera, said she’s not so sure all parents will immediately be on board.

“I think it is a good idea, but changing parents’ minds that are used to the old law, I think will be difficult,” said Skinner.

She also expressed concerns about the fact that children come in all shapes and sizes, and a universal age requirement may not be the best way to address child safety.

At the heart of the matter is the safety of children, and while some parents believe that raising the age requirement for booster seats is a necessary step, others believe that it may not be the best solution for all families.

As the legislation moves forward, it will be interesting to see how this debate plays out and what changes, if any, will be made to the current law.

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