HB 99 would permit staff with minimal training to carry loaded guns in schools

The Criminal Justice Committee of the Ohio House is hearing opponent testimony on HB 99 on Thursday, March 25, either written or oral.  All testimony must be emailed by 11 a.m. on Wednesday, March 24 to be included in the hearing record.  This bill would allow school districts to employ armed personnel with as little as eight hours of concealed carry training.  Among the dangers of this bill:
• Introducing more guns in school increases the risk of gun violence in the school
• Even highly trained law enforcement report their ability to shoot accurately decreases
significantly when engaged in gunfights with perpetrators
• Arming teachers imposes new liability, and can raise district premiums or endanger coverage

Here is a fact sheet about last year’s equivalent bill, SB 317.

You must submit a witness slip and your written testimony to criminaljusticecommittee@ohiohouse.gov  Here is the format for testimony to this committee [download]
Also attach a witness slip with the header “Criminal Justice Committee”  [download]

When my parish was preparing active shooter policies, the Chief of Police of Wyoming, Ohio told us that shooting accurately when the target is moving is extremely difficult even for highly-trained police officers. Imagine spaces filled with the turmoil of terrified children. An armed teacher or staff member who feels threatened could also shoot a student during a perceived confrontation. Data show that Black students are disproportionately treated as severe discipline problems in U.S. schools. Arming school staff puts children of color in particular danger.

Advocacy briefings are compiled by Ariel Miller, a member of Ascension & Holy Trinity, Wyoming,  and a member of the diocesan Becoming Beloved Community Leadership Team.