Byrnes Calls for Empowering Schools With Their Own Safety

Assemblywoman Marjorie Byrnes (R,C-Caledonia) said the time has come to empower schools with the resources they need to keep students safe at a press conference led by Leader Will Barclay (R,C-Pulaski) and members of the Assembly Minority Conference.

The press conference highlighted findings from the conference’s statewide Task Force on School Safety and Security, which supported the creation of a statewide school resource officer training and certification program based on legislation sponsored by Byrnes (A.9432 of 2022).

“How many shootings do we need to witness before we realize the time has come to empower schools to take care of their own safety needs,” said Byrnes. “There is no rational reason to prevent schools from hiring retired law enforcement, should they wish to, to better safeguard their students, faculty and property. It is time for Albany to pass this common-sense measure and allow schools to make the decision for themselves.”

Byrnes and her colleagues also addressed the need for the state to do more for mental health support in schools, create a New York State Division of School Safety and Security while also expanding statewide emergency response plans and other initiatives to better identify threats and provide support to at-risk students.