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File #: 170413    Version: 0 Name:
Type: Resolution Status: ADOPTED
File created: 4/27/2017 In control: CITY COUNCIL
On agenda: Final action: 5/4/2017
Title: Urging the Pennsylvania Legislature to reject Senate Bill 383, which would permit school personnel to carry concealed firearms in schools.
Sponsors: Councilmember Johnson, Councilmember Jones
Attachments: 1. Resolution No. 17041300.pdf, 2. Signature17041300.pdf
Title
Urging the Pennsylvania Legislature to reject Senate Bill 383, which would permit school personnel to carry concealed firearms in schools.

Body
WHEREAS, On February 15, 2017, Senator Donald White introduced Pennsylvania Senate Bill 383, which would permit school personnel to carry concealed firearms in schools. The only requirements for carrying a firearm in school under Senate Bill 383 would be: a license to carry a concealed firearm and a basic certification in the use of a firearm; and

WHEREAS, The Pennsylvania Senate and House have both studied the issue of allowing school personnel to carry firearms and found it not advisable. The Pennsylvania House Select Committee on School Safety explicitly stated in 2014 that it did not recommend arming general school personnel. In the same report, testimony from state agencies, law enforcement, education groups, and district attorneys led the Select Committee to recommend that only school police officers or security officers be armed on school property. An Advisory Committee on Violence Prevention, formed at the direction of the State Senate, echoed the conclusions of the House Select Committee when it wrote in its 2014 report: "Police officers undergo extensive training in the use of their weapons and teachers do not. Therefore, it is unreasonable to expect a teacher to have the same firearms competency as a law enforcement officer, and not sound policy to assign such responsibility to a teacher"; and

WHEREAS, The Police Chief of Susquehanna Township, Robert A. Martin, raised skepticism about the potential consequences of arming school staff who have not received the same extensive situational training as police officers. Martin noted that police departments dedicate "a lot of time and a lot of effort and a lot of hours, and it's ongoing, in the training of our law enforcement officers to meet those legal, physical and mental thresholds to use deadly force"; and

WHEREAS, National School Safety and...

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