School safety debate continues

MADISON, Wis. (WMTV)— Lawmakers, students and religious leaders gathered on Monday to say they think the governor’s plan is not enough.

After thousands of students walked out of Wisconsin schools on Wednesday in support of gun reform, Governor Walker announced his proposal to curb violence in schools.

Walker said arming teachers is not the answer.

“Our focus doesn’t focus on that. It says what do we need to do to make the schools safe so the teachers can teach, the students can learn, and everybody can feel safe going forward,” said Walker.

The $100 million plans focus greatly on investing in school security to evade threats.

“At airports, people aren’t afraid of firearms. They’re not afraid of explosives. They’re not afraid of knives. That’s our goal here is to focus on safety not in one particular way. If you can just focus on one thing, you are limiting your focus,” said Walker.

On Monday, lawmakers, students and religious leaders gathered to say they think the governor’s plan is not enough.

“The legislature has asked everyone else to step up. Now, we join the children of our state in demanding that the legislature step up to solve this problem, to address the cause, to do all they can to ensure that those who wish to do harm can’t get their hands on a gun,” said Anneliese Dickman.

One East High School student, Lydia Hester, has led the conversation about gun reform in her school. She wrote a letter with other students to Governor Walker addressing their concerns in schools.

She said she thinks Governor Walker’s plan does have some positive changes.

“We agree with a lot of things that are being proposed with like mental health and improving school communities,” said Hester.

But some lawmakers, students and educational leaders are still saying the governor needs to do more.

“I just don’t think those bills get to the root of the problem. And so I think it’s problematic that we can’t keep going in the status quo. We have to make fundamental change that addresses the root cause of these problems, and you really can’t do that without passing universal background checks and some of these other measures,” said State Representative Chris Taylor.


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