Trump administration to help arm US school staff

Yolanda Curtis
March 12, 2018

The measures come during a reignited national gun control debate revived by survivors of last month's massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where 14 students and three staff were gunned down by a man with a semi-automatic rifle. "All topics are open to being addressed on this commission", one official said.

Trump had embraced suggestions to close loopholes for gun buyers seeking to avoid the background check system, raise the age limit for buying rifles, and find ways to temporarily seize guns from people reported to be risky.

Trump on Saturday criticized the use of blue-ribbon commissions in dealing with drug dealers, telling a crowd at a rally near Pittsburgh, "We can't just keep setting up blue-ribbon committees with your wife and your wife and your husband, and they meet and they have a meal and they talk, talk talk talk, two hours later, then they write a report".

Further, the administration voiced support for legislation dubbed the "STOP School Violence Act", which would provide states with funding for training, technology and other assistance to help schools identify and prevent violent acts.

Speaking last month, President Trump had appeared indignant at the fact Americans could legally buy assault rifles from the age of 18 yet had to wait until 21 to buy handguns.

But in its watered-down new school safety plan, the White House backed away from other proposals the president had previously endorsed, including raising the legal age to buy certain guns.

Trump plan does not include substantial changes to gun laws....

WASHINGTON — The White House said Sunday that the federal government will help provide "rigorous firearms training" for qualified volunteer school personnel as part of a package of policy changes he will propose after the February 14 mass shooting at Parklands Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. He's also endorsing legislation to improve background checks, and urging states to pass laws temporarily keeping guns out of the hands of people judged to be unsafe to themselves or others.

A senior administration official added that there are already "a multitude of programs that exist across the country where school personnel are trained in conjunction with state or local law enforcement". Many Republican lawmakers say it should be left to the states.

The administration is backing the "Fix NICS" bill introduced by Sen.

The proposal has angered education groups, who have said arming educators could put both adults and students at risk. John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, and Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., that would improve information in the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

"Take the guns first, go through due process second", Trump said.

Trump will call on state governments to allow law enforcement officials to obtain court orders to temporarily seize guns from people reported to be unsafe, officials said. And he called for the reform and expansion of mental health programs, as well as a full audit and review of the Federal Bureau of Investigation tip line. They declined to give any specific timeline for the DeVos' commission to produce recommendations, other than saying it would be less than a year, and the commission would work "quickly". The Justice Department has submitted a proposed regulation to the Office of Management and Budget for review to prohibit their sale by classifying them as machine guns under federal law. Administration officials said they had not set a deadline for the commission's recommendations, but expected they'd made in under a year.

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