DeSantis signs new law to improve school safety in Florida

by Timothy Frudd

Photo: Alamy

Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a law this week to improve the safety and security of Florida’s schools.

Amid the recent shooting in Uvalde, Texas, that left 19 students and two teachers dead, DeSantis explained Tuesday, “Every child needs a safe and secure learning environment.”

DeSantis signed HB 1421, which allows the Commissioner of Education to enforce school safety across the state, allows school officers to arrest individuals on charter school grounds, and mandates crisis intervention and training for all Florida school officers.

The law also enhances school emergency drills, forces schools to develop evacuation plans, and mandates mental health training for a minimum of 80 percent of school employees, as well as other improvements to the safety of Florida’s schools.

“By signing HB 1421, we continue to build on the many steps we have taken since 2019 to implement the recommendations of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Public Safety Commission, while also making record investments in mental health and school safety,” said DeSantis in a press release.

State Board of Education Member Ryan Petty noted, “This legislation is a huge leap forward in school safety.” He added, “Nothing is more important than providing safe and secure learning environments for our children and educators. Extending the Commission’s work and requiring mental health and de-escalation training for safe-school officers will make a major difference in mitigating the risk of a future tragedy.”

In the wake of the horrific shooting in Texas and other mass shootings across the nation, lawmakers have been scrambling to offer solutions to the American people without encroaching on Americans’ liberties and freedoms.

Florida’s HB 1421 law offers an alternative solution to the Democrat talking point about taking away guns from law-abiding citizens. DeSantis is showing the nation how the government can enact common-sense laws to protect America’s schools and children while protecting constitutional freedoms.

In addition to signing HB 1421, DeSantis recently approved the Freedom First Budget, allocating $140 million for mental health and $210 million for increasing school safety and security.

President of Stand with Parkland, Tony Montalto, condoned the governor’s actions, stating, “Every parent deserves to know their child is safe at school. He explained, “Florida will continue to do everything possible to make sure our schools meet the highest safety standards and that mental health issues associated with school violence are being addressed.”

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