As a former lifeguard and assistant pool manager at Hillyard Swimming Pool, I am troubled by the proposal to charge the children of Spokane a fee for swimming. Neighborhood kids utilize our pools to swim and play, under well-trained and caring staff. Those kids know they are safe, in and out of the water. The pool is a place for them to go and stay out of trouble. By charging a fee, some children will be left on the outside looking in.
The city of Spokane has always been able to find a way to make free swimming work. I do realize that in this current economic downturn that the city is strapped for cash to provide the excellent and nationally recognized services to its citizens. But the citizens of Spokane are in an economic downturn as well and many families will not be able to afford the money necessary to allow their children to enjoy the pool. This is exactly the time for Spokane to again find a way to allow all the children to swim for free.
Capt. Clayton T. Colliton
Joint Base Balad, Iraq