It’s important for playgrounds to ensure that faulty equipment, improper surfaces and unsafe behaviour don’t ruin the fun of children.
But in Cyprus, where there are over 1,000 playgrounds and outdoor play equipment, checks are sparse, Phileleftheros reports.
And in the case of playgrounds at communal or other parks, which are often targeted by vandals, equipment becomes extremely hazardous to children.
This is what House Interior Committee members heard on Tuesday while discussing a bill providing for stricter regulations and increased security at places where children gather.
The draft bill was proposed by Green Party MP Charalambos Theopemptou.
The Committee also heard that at private kindergartens and summer schools, safety and precautionary measures are subject to the goodwill of the owners since they are not bound by EU standards believed to provide sufficient protection to a child.
At the same time, an Interior Ministry representative agreed that regulating the operation of playgrounds is essential. But he also made clear that the Ministry should not be the one responsible for the issuance of operation licenses.
Interior Committee Chairwoman Eleni Mavrou said playgrounds cover a wide spectrum considering that there are indoor and outdoor ones – at public and private kindergartens as well as at elementary schools.
There are also private playgrounds operating in the evenings and on weekends. And there are playgrounds operating at restaurants, cafes and medical centres and all should be subject to regular checks, she added.