Should YMCA be on the Hook for This One?


Do you all notice the all too common form of a commercial faintly concealed in a news story on TV these day? It was a cable news program, CNN I think, where a gentlemen had succumbed to a heart attack in a Chicago YMCA pool.

Timothy Cavanagh, concerned family attorney of Josef Bornstein, had his sights set on the teenage YMCA life guards who failed to notice that Bornstein sank upon his myocardial infarction. They were negligent in this aspect of their duties, but we all know that everybody spends half their waking time on smart phones nowadays, not just these poorly compensated YMCA pool rescue employees.

The YMCA is a non-profit entity whose operational revenue comes from fundraising,
gifts and special events, membership dues and collaborative relationships. Sounds like this Young Men’s Christian Association would not have enough in their budget to litigate against the experienced contingent of CLG lawyers, and pay off a settlement that went against them.

The video of Mr Bornstein entering the YMCA pool revealed him to be overweight. I don’t know if he was a smoker or drinker. So the interesting legal question here is to what extent do known health risks have to make wiser choices about their daily activities. Swimming is strenuous.



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