AUSTIN, Texas — The Texas chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, part of Everytown for Gun Safety, released the following response after the Texas Senate voted to advance SB 244, which would increase the number of school marshals that a school can appoint from one per 200 students — or one per building — to an unlimited number. Yesterday, the Senate passed SB 406, which would allow school marshals who have direct contact with students to carry guns on their person rather than store them in a locked safe.
“I’m very concerned for the safety of our schoolchildren as lawmakers continue to pass bills that would aggressively increase how many of our children’s teachers are armed,” said Hilary Whitfield, volunteer leader with the Texas chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. “We all want to keep our schools safer, but adding guns to the problem is not the solution.”
Texas’ School Marshal Program allows teachers and other school staff to be armed, despite the fact that there is no evidence indicating that arming teachers makes schools safer. In fact, research shows that access to a gun increases the risk posed to children and complicates any law enforcement response to active shooter situations.
Increasing the number of guns in schools also increases the risk of guns falling into the wrong hands. Last year, a teacher’s gun was stolen by a student in school in Missouri. And in Detroit, a student found a loaded gun in a school bathroom stall after a county sheriff unintentionally left it behind.
More information on the dangers of arming teachers is available here.