February 22, 2018

Speaker Heastie Statement on New York State Sheriffs' Association Proposal to Bring Armed Guards into New York State Schools

We all share in the goal of providing our schools with the resources they need to make sure our kids are safe. But more guns is not the answer and never has been. The best efforts of a trained armed guard present at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School did not prevent the terrible tragedy that unfolded last week, which shows that a proposal like this will only provide an illusion of safety.

Instead, we should be addressing the root causes of gun violence by reducing the number of guns on our streets, limiting access to these deadly weapons and increasing mental health services to ensure the kind of healthy environment that will allow kids to grow and thrive. We live in a society where minors can't buy alcohol, but in many states are allowed to buy deadly assault weapons with very little effort. How many more mass shootings must citizens endure before we as a country finally have a serious conversation about the scourge of gun violence that plagues our communities?

More guns will not make us safer. We need to be talking about real solutions, and we need to pass common sense gun reforms that the majority of Americans support.