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NYCLU Press Office, 212.607.3372

November 29, 2017

November 29, 2017 New York State Senator Simcha Felder reiterated his call to place armed police officers in New York City schools on Tuesday, suggesting he would join state Democrats if they were to support the move.

The following statement is attributable to NYCLU Executive Director Donna Lieberman:

“Arming school police officers is not the way to keep our children safe and supported in school. Senator Felder’s call for armed police in schools is a huge step in the wrong direction. It is disappointing that the Senator would use our children’s safety and education as a political football.

Stationing gun-toting police in schools is a recipe for disaster -- with potentially deadly results. The Felder proposal invites the use of deadly force against students and promotes a hostile school climate instead of age-appropriate educational interventions. We need more accountability mechanisms to interrupt the school-to-prison pipeline, not more uses of force from police in schools.

The NYCLU has long advocated for an updated memorandum of understanding that would limit the involvement of police in school discipline. It’s time to move away from the criminalization of students, not lean in to the militarization of our schools. The last thing we need is more guns in schools.”