Ohio lawmakers are discussing training for gun school staff

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio school districts can re-arm staff under legislation quickly tracked by Republican lawmakers to counter the impact of a court ruling that restricted that practice.

This measure is aimed at repealing last year’s decision of the Ohio Supreme Court, according to which, according to current legislation, armed schoolchildren will need hundreds of hours of training.

According to the latest version of the bill, school workers carrying weapons will need up to 24 hours of initial training, followed by up to eight hours of retraining each year. The bill does not specify the overall minimum training requirements, which has led to criticism from Democrats for moving legislation too fast without all the details.

Training should include how to stop an active shooter, how to alleviate a tough situation, inflict injuries, and provide first aid for at least four hours in “scenario-based exercise or simulation” and completion of “tactical firearms training”. according to the bill.

The Republican-controlled Senate was expected to approve the measure on Wednesday. More than two dozen states allow school staff to be armed under certain circumstances.

Republican Gov. Mike DeVine supports the legislation as long as it requires adequate and annual training of armed personnel. DeWine highlighted his support last week when he announced plans to spend a “significant amount of money” to help schools create physical barriers against attacks without going into details.

The Supreme Court decision came after local Madison schools in southwestern Ohio voted to allow teachers and staff who have undergone 24-hour training in concealed weapons to carry firearms after the school fire in 2016. After the adoption of an armed program in the district in 2018, a group of parents successfully filed a lawsuit in the district to prevent the armament of teachers without extensive training, equivalent to that of a police officer.

One parent, Erin Gabbard, spoke out against the bill on Tuesday, calling it radical and reckless.

“It doesn’t protect our children, it puts them at risk,” Gabbard said. “Allowing teachers to go to school with our children with no more than 24 hours of training is not enough. It makes our children less safe. ”

Opponents of the bill, including educators and proponents of gun control, at Tuesday’s hearing far outnumbered supporters. One supporter, Buckeye Firearms Association lobbyist Rob Sexton, said armaments teachers would give children a chance to fight if “the worst happens in our schools”.

He also warned that training should not be so rigorous that “it becomes a hindrance because people don’t actually enroll in the program. We really want school districts and people to be ready to take this opportunity to protect our children. ”

Because the bill requires armed officers to have a permit for concealed weapons, it adds eight hours to the training requirement, Sexton said.

The bill is opposed by major law enforcement groups and proponents of gun control, and is supported by several police departments and school districts.

Copyright © 2022 The Washington Times, LLC.

Source link