Washington Republicans Propose Voluntary Firearm Training For Teachers

The Washington Legislature has sent a ban on bump stocks to Gov. Jay Inslee for his signature. A bump stock is a trigger modification device that make a semi-automatic rifle function more like an automatic weapon. CREDIT: JON CONNELL


Lawmakers in Washington state continue to look for ways to prevent mass shootings in schools. On Wednesday, Republicans in the state Senate proposed creating a voluntary training program for school staff on how to respond to an active shooter.

School districts could opt-in to the program that would include conflict de-escalation and firearm training. Districts could then allow administrators or teachers to conceal-carry.

Republican Sen. Phil Fortunado is the proposal’s prime sponsor. 

“Do I like it? No,” he said. “Do I like the fact that we have to put guns or protect our children with guns? No. Do I like the fact people come in and shoot them up? That’s what we’re trying to protect against.”

Republicans also proposed that every school employ at least one mental health counselor for students.

Meanwhile, Democrats in the Senate proposed enhancing background checks on military-style weapon purchases. They also suggested creating a way for students to report threats anonymously.

But lawmakers only have until the scheduled end of the legislative session next Thursday to pass any bills to the Governor’s desk.

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