Wisconsin Senate passes bill lowering lifeguard age

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Wisconsin Senate has passed a bill that would allow 15-year-olds to work as lifeguards, a move sought by the state's tourism industry.

The measure's supporters say the change will increase the number of potential lifeguards for pools and waterparks, particularly at tourist destinations in Wisconsin Dells.

Current state law prohibits 14- and 15-year-olds from working as lifeguards. The bill sent to Gov. Scott Walker on Tuesday requires the state Department of Workforce Development to allow 15-year-olds to become lifeguards.

The American Red Cross as well as the Association of Wisconsin Tourism Attractions and the Wisconsin Alliances of YMCAs all have registered in support.

The Assembly passed the bill in November.

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