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Red Cross Recognized State Representative for Urging CPR Training in High Schools

The American Red Cross St. Louis Area Chapter recognized Missouri Representative Rick Stream, R-District 94, for his legislative efforts to encourage more Missourians to become trained in CPR. During a ceremony today at the regional Red Cross headquarters, Rep. Stream was honored for his legislation that encourages school districts to make CPR training a requirement of high school graduation.

“It is simple: CPR saves lives. It is important we teach as many young people as possible the ‘hands-only’ CPR,” Rep. Stream said. “We want give them the training and then give them the courage and confidence to use their skills if the need arises.”

As it was written, Rep. Stream’s bill would have meant an additional 70,000 Missourians annually would be trained in CPR. Although it passed in the House, it was amended in the Senate. The bill now encourages high schools to require the training, but does not mandate it. Although the bill did not pass in its original form, it will result in many more Missourians trained in the lifesaving skill.

“I would guess Rep. Stream has made every school district in the State aware of the new ‘hands-only’ CPR training,” said Red Cross board chair Bob Ciapciak (pronounced chap-check). “As a result of his work, every district should at least consider offering the training during high school. For pennies per student and using Red Cross materials, schools can train students in a single 30 to 40 minute class.”

The Red Cross mission is to prevent and alleviate human suffering in the face of emergencies. CPR training certainly does that. The CPR instruction should be based on a nationally-recognized, current program, such as instruction provided through the Red Cross. Rep. Stream’s bill is now part of a Senate bill awaiting Governor Nixon’s signature. The law could take effect in the fall of 2014.