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Law enforcement and school officials announce safety proposal

Flickr User Clover Autrey

A group of law enforcement members – from sheriffs to prosecutors – unveiled a plan to prevent violence in Michigan schools Thursday.

Since the high school shooting in Parkland, Florida in February, the conversation about how to keep kids safe in schools has persisted.

Some argue that more guns in schools will make them safer – like arming teachers. But the plan presented steers away from a conversation on firearms. 

Instead, it’s focused on hiring more school safety officers and mental health professionals in schools.

Mark Reen is a former president for the Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan.

“There’s been enough talking. Our kids’ lives are on the line. It’s time for a change.”

Yvonne Caamal Canul is the superintendent of the Lansing school district.

13 “This plan – this is why I think I’m so supportive of this plan – is it really pushes the envelope on the issue around local law enforcement partnering in really substantive, meaningful and life changing ways.”

Part of the plan also asks for millions of dollars for school resource officers. Those are uniformed police officers assigned to schools. Scott Wrigglesworth is the Ingham County Sheriff. He says school resource officers are the best forms of community policing.

“They’re in the buildings every single day. They get to know the kids, the kids’ parents, the kids’ families the teachers. And I think the single best example of having a school resource officer is incalculable.”

The proposal calls for 120 (m) million dollars for safety infrastructure and more officers. The group will have to work with lawmakers to get bills drafted and passed.