The Ohio chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots network, released the following statement after the Ohio Senate passed and the House of Representatives concurred on OH HB 99, a bill that would allow teachers to bring firearms into learning environments with minimal training. Volunteers from the Ohio chapter of Moms Demand Action testified against the legislation during yesterday’s committee hearing which came just one week after 19 children and two educators were shot and killed at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. The bill now goes to Governor Mike DeWine’s desk.
“Arming teachers does not prevent gun violence or protect our students at school. It’s infuriating that our lawmakers pushed through a dangerous bill that will do nothing but put students’ lives further at risk just one week after a mass shooting at a school in Texas,” said Kristine Woodworth, a volunteer with the Ohio chapter of Moms Demand Action. “It’s time for our lawmakers to do their jobs and pass common sense, evidence based measures that will actually prevent gun violence in schools, not measures like this bill that will put guns in their classrooms. Governor DeWine must do his job of protecting our kids and veto this bill.”
Arming teachers does not make children safer — instead, it increases the risk of gun violence in schools by increasing the chances that a teacher’s gun will fall into the wrong hands, or that a gun will discharge unintentionally and injure a student. There have been several incidents of school staff intentionally or unintentionally discharging guns on school grounds across the country. Access to a firearm, irrespective of age, triples the risk of death by suicide and doubles the risk of death by homicide.