Mother, child kicked out from pool for wearing water wings

Child wearing floats in the pool 
By: David Ross 

One day, a mother and her sick child went to enjoy a swim at their local pool.

After an incident at the pool, the mother is upset. She and her son were expelled from the local public pool, for wearing water wings on their arms.

Jen Wymer said she was in North Park pool Monday with her son, Max, who has a disability.
Wymer said rescuers told her that using water wings was against the rules of the pool and her son had to remove them.

"All they said is that rules are rules and rules are rules. There will be no compromise," said Wymer. "I went to the lifeguard and said: 'My son has cerebral palsy. He does not walk well and has balance problems. Could he please keep the floats?'”
When rescuers told Wymer that Max had to take off the wings, she refused, so officials from the pool called the police.

The website of Allegheny County states: "Jackets including Coast Guard approved floats are prohibited except specialized flotation devices for disabled customers only."

At first, Wymer took off the wings from Max, but after an hour of having him in the pool she decided to put them back on.
"I put the floats back on and the lifeguard manager turned to me and said: “'Sorry, but he is using floats today,' and he called the police," said Wymer.

According to Wymer, two police officers then escorted her out of the pool.
"There was a woman, who went directly to the police and said: 'Are you kicking them out because of the floats? She obviously has a child with a physical disability,'" said Wymer.

The Allegheny County Parks Director said water wings are prohibited because they are "a false sense
of security."

The director said that the police were there to tell Wymer the rules, not to kick her out of the pool.
Wymer said that while she understood that there are rules in place for a reason, she felt the situation was handled badly.

"They showed no compassion for a child who needs a little more support," said Wymer.
Experts warn that floats do not prevent drowning and is not a life saving tool. "We recommend a lifejacket or a lifevest for children as a safer alternative," the website states.



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