Chattanooga, TN – U.S. Representative Chuck Fleischmann (TN-03) introduced H.R. 2491, the Securing Aid for Every (SAFE) School Act. The SAFE School Act establishes a $900 million grant program that will allow public and private schools to train and hire veterans and former law enforcement officers to serve as school safety officers, hire off-duty law enforcement officers, and provide funding to harden schools and increase physical security. Congressman Fleischmann introduced H.R. 2491 as the companion bill in the House of Representatives to U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn’s S. 1107 in the Senate.
“The shooting at the Covenant School in Nashville broke my heart and the hearts of every Tennessean and American. No child should ever be lost to gun violence, and no parent should ever lose a child to gun violence. We must protect our nation’s schools and children from evil individuals who seek to cause senseless harm to others,” said Rep. Fleischmann. My bill, which is the companion to Senator Blackburn’s legislation, is commonsense and will provide funds for both public and private schools to hire and train former law enforcement professionals and veterans to be SROs and allow schools funds and the flexibility to increase security as they see fit. I sincerely hope that my colleagues in Congress and President Biden see the importance of this commonsense bill and quickly pass it into law, so we can keep our children safe.”
“I am beyond heartbroken at the shooting that occurred at the Covenant School in Nashville,” said Senator Blackburn. “No parent should have to endure what these families are experiencing. Schools should be places where children are safe to learn, play, and be children. This legislation will allow both public and private schools to train and hire veterans and former law enforcement officers to serve as school safety officers as well as increase physical security measures to harden schools. By providing these critical funds, we can help protect our precious children and secure our schools.”
The SAFE Schools Act Background:
- The SAFE School Act establishes a $900 million grant program that will allow both public and private schools to train and hire veterans and former law enforcement officers to serve as school safety officers.
- Specifically, states will be allowed to establish, if necessary, and implement a certification program that allows veterans and former law enforcement officers to become certified school safety officers.
- States may use the grant funds to hire off-duty law enforcement officers as school safety officers.
- Additionally, schools can also utilize the funding to increase training for teachers, enhance the physical security of the school, conduct threat assessments, and purchase equipment for school safety officers.